All You Need Is Love … but love is elusive

There is hope. There is promise. There is kindness. There is peace. There is love. It may be sheltered by tall grasses or buried beneath weeds. It may be hidden in the midst of a thorny facade. So what! It is our calling to find it, our duty to bring it to light. We were not made to stagnate. We were not created to wallow in frustration until one last breath leaves our body.

View from the pasture

We were made to rejoice. We were made to shine a light out into the world. Our responsibility — yours, mine, every single person on this earth no matter how twisted and ugly they have allowed themselves to become — was created by God, in the image of God, to reflect the glory of God. And no matter how good or bad we think we are/they are/someone is: we are all sinners. We are condemned, but the gift is waiting — the gift of forgiveness and an opportunity to reside forever in paradise. We just have to get over ourselves, give up the ghost of ungodliness, and agree to the terms and conditions:

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. – Romans 10:9-10

View from the pasture with love and stormy skies.

Arrogance blinds us, helps us forget we stomp around on this planet at the discretion of God in heaven. Horror happens. Atrocities sweep through whole nations. Hatred rears its ugly head. Lies spread, sentiment is twisted and manipulated. But all is working according to His plan.

Yes … His plan.

We can’t possibly understand. We can’t possibly see beyond the here and the now, the pain and frustration. But it’s our choice — our burden, opportunity and birthright — to use our personal gifts to help the hurting, ease the suffering, and praise the name of Jesus. We are so very weak. We are simple-minded fools who forget how utterly helpless we are.

We forget — but how?! — that the only thing we need do or say is, “Yes!” to God. And suddenly we are filled with the incomprehensible power of the Holy Spirit — transformers with beating hearts and souls, no longer the plastic, manufactured variety commonly found in the toy aisle.

View from the pasture - love those stormy skies.

So what do we do? What can we do when darkness threatens light and love?

We can pray. We can love our neighbors. Small acts in your neck of the woods reverberate into the community. One person’s good deed may inspire another, who inspires another and so on. It’s faith that the tiniest of good intentions (even the size of a mustard seed!) will have a big impact that we, with our close-minded naivety, cannot fathom.

What we do not do (ask me how I know!) … is sit in front of the television, flipping from one news outlet to another, all the while checking Twitter for updates, visiting various news and opinion sites for latest bits of twisted reality, and in general, wasting precious hours. The only result that can come of that behavior is anger and despair that settles like wet mist on stagnant wasteland.

This is happening at every turn …

Do not go about spreading slander among your people. “‘Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor’s life. I am the Lord. – Leviticus 19:6

Turn away from media manipulation, turn into the Bible, and remember:

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. – John 13:34-35

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28

I urge you to read Romans 8 in its entirety because maybe you’re feeling as I do — not sure what to pray for, or how to help the situations of our days.

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. – Romans 8:26-27

Love God. Love your neighbor. Pray without ceasing … those are the only things we can do. And that? That is everything.

 

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2 Comments

  • comment-avatar
    Gilda July 10, 2016 (9:56 am)

    Amen!