I love pizza!
I love Starbucks!
I love the Oklahoma Sooners!
I love my wife and my daughter!
I think we have used the word love for so many things we have forgotten the real meaning behind it. We have exchanged love for like. When this happens we lose sight of what it means to really love someone and therefore don't really know how to show it. We are quick to say, "I love you" but then our actions do not always support our words! John, one of the authors of the bible, says this,
"Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth."
I think what he is saying here is talk is cheap! Don't just say you love your wife, or your kids, or your neighbors, or your coworkers, or your teachers, etc., show it. What I really think John may be saying here is don't call yourself a follower of Jesus who claims to love him and love others, and then not change the way you treat people. So in a very practical way how can you love with action:
1. At home: Randomly clean the bathrooms for your parents without being asked, clean your teenagers room (ok that may be extreme, stay out of there), clean the dishes after dinner, be patient with your children, rub your wives feet, learn to forgive, etc.
2 At work or school: Give grace to your boss or teacher that you don't really care for or get along with, pay attention to the person others often avoid.
3. Your neighborhood, community and world: bake cookies for your neighbor, babysit for a single parent, volunteer at a local shelter or retirement home, tutor a child at a local elementary, deliver meals for meals on wheels, become a big brother or sister, donate shoes to solesforsouls, begin donating money to provide clean water to a community.
The Christian community for to long has been known only for what we are against. I long to be a part of a church, a group of people, who are passionate about living out what we are for! So, may we all stop just saying that we are about loving people and begin to actually love people.