An easy one today:
Loving everyone doesn’t sound possible to you and me, but daily life delivers an invitation and challenge to give it a go. You don’t need to speak from a platform to share the gospel and you don’t need to deliver a three-point sermon to demonstrate the love you’ve received from Jesus. Sometimes a simple smile will suffice.
Green: Smile and say hello to someone who you don’t know today.
Amber: Use social media to share a Bible verse that communicates God’s love for those who love him and those who don’t.
Red: Engage someone in conversation and explain to them that they too are loved by God.
‘He answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind”; and, “Love your neighbour as yourself.”’ (Luke 10:27 NIV)
As I was on my way to the Academy this morning someone smiled at me, and so I smiled back. At communion I did what I usually do, and instead of a sermon we had a discussion. One of the ladies said she found the gospel passage about being born again difficult so I explained it to her (and the others). I emphasised that God loves them – each individually, not just the world in general – so much that Jesus came and enabled us to be right with God. I included using the 75% ethanol mix that I had brought to sanitise my hands as an illustration. No matter how hard we try, we cannot get rid of a germ on our own. We need soap and water or alcohol based sanitiser. My husband loves me so much that he mixed it up and gave it to me… free of charge…. so that I could be clean. Similarly God loves us so much that Jesus takes away the effects of sin (falling short of 100% perfection), the inner, spiritual stains. All we need to do is believe and accept what Jesus did. We can’t be good enough by our own efforts. Although some people are naturally nicer than others, nobody is perfect and when we accept the new life that Jesus offers, and invite the Holy Spirit to work within us, the fruit of that is love, joy, peace, patience, etc etc. and the world is a better place for it. Or at least I said something along those lines.
Later this morning I went to do an assembly at a first school and I took along a box of chocolates for the members of staff who are feeling especially under stress. I wrote a card saying that I was praying for them.
Towards the end of the afternoon I was talking with person who is feeling quite a bit of stress and has a very difficult decision to make and possibly some rough times ahead. And of the things I said was that no matter what happens, God still loves them and that nothing can separate them from God’s love. This person is a Christian but nevertheless, sometimes Christians need reminding of God’s love for them regardless of things that may be going on in their lives.