Where Is The Love?
Do you remember the song ‘Where is the Love?’ by The Black Eyed Peas? It was circa 2003. Some of the lyrics include, “Can’t we all just get along?” and “Can you practice what you preachin’?” I wonder if the songwriters ever imagined we would ask the world ‘where is the love?’ louder today than they did fifteen years ago.
I love to watch the show ‘What Would You Do?’ every now and then. It is honestly fascinating to me; maybe because it is a social psychological experiment of sorts and it always leaves me wondering how I would handle certain situations. One episode included a woman humiliating a transwoman (both were actresses) in a restaurant. The purpose of the scenario was to see how the general public would respond. One random young man spoke up and asked the woman to stop speaking to the transgender woman in that hateful manner. The woman then said, “Well I don’t agree with her lifestyle! What she is doing is wrong!” The man replied in an even tone, “Although I do not agree with her choices, I am not going to speak hate to her.”
Those words stuck with me. We are not exempt from showing kindness just because we do not agree with someone’s lifestyle or choices. Sin is not of God, but neither is hate. Ephesians 5:1-2 instructs us to
Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
We as Christians—thank goodness—have an ever-present, immeasurable amount of love because God is love (1 John 4:8). If God is love, and God lives within us, we are to be love as well. In fact, Jesus tells us so. In John 13:34, He says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
How will we bring people to Jesus if we are not showing them who He is by how we live and act? The often used phrase, “You may be the only Bible someone ever reads” rings true here.
In Ephesians 4:32 Paul tells us to be kind and compassionate to one another, and we need to be doing just that. We must get off our high horse of religious moralism and remove the plank from our own eye before we point out the speck in someone else’s (Matthew 7:3-5). I am not condoning sin, but I am also not condoning a life filled with self-righteousness. No one is perfect, only Jesus.
Who is welcomed into the church? Everyone! Literally everyone. Church was made for the sinners. In Luke 5:29-32, after being questioned why he was eating and drinking with the tax collectors and sinners, Jesus responded, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Jesus welcomed everyone! Just like Jesus, we are to love everyone we come into contact with.
I believe the way we reach others, is not through spewing hatred like a fire hydrant being flushed, but through relationships. Be kind, start conversations with people, and get to know them. Then difficult conversations can be had after you have a foundation of trust and respect.
Your love for God is shown by how you love people. I am not saying you have to agree with them or what they do, but you have to show them love. Real love. The kind that can only be found in Jesus. If you don’t, who will?
How can you show love to those around you?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Whitney can be described by the opening lyrics of a few Tom Petty songs. She's a good girl who grew up in a small Indiana town who loves her mama, Jesus, and America too. She practices medicine as a physician assistant at an urgent care. Whitney is a music enthusiast and leads worship at her church. She has a heart for people, and wants to help young girls and women find their worth in Christ rather than what the world says of them. Whitney loves a good dad joke, the outdoors, spending time with family and friends, Southern manners, working on her fitness, attempting Pinterest crafts, and cheering on Indiana University basketball.