A Guest Post By Mickie DeVries (My car talk buddy and friend with an endlessly big heart.)
I feel like I have to preface this post with I’m not a writer . . . I’m a mom, I drive carpool, I take pretty pictures, but I most definitely am not a writer, but you are stuck with me today 🙂 I mentioned this idea of a post to Lisa while our children took swimming lessons in June and she liked the idea that was brewing in my head, and then said the words I dreaded to hear . . . maybe you should think of doing a guest post. Fast forward a month and this idea was still tugging at my brain, however, I kept pushing it down because after all I’m not a writer and maybe Lisa would forget all about it. Then I received a message recently from Lisa that went something like this, okay exactly like this since copy and pasting is more my style than retyping: How are you guys? I miss my daily dose of Mickie! And… now I am going to ask you about that guest post? She didn’t forget and since I still felt the pull of this topic I’m going to dive in!
One Sunday in June we sang the song They’ll Know We Are Christians. You know the one with the chorus: and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love. It got me thinking do people really know we are Christians by our love? Seems like it should be a given since Jesus clearly calls us to do this.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35 (NIV)
Jesus also says in Matthew 5:44 (NIV), “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,”
Um… I don’t know about you, but I’m not too good at loving my enemies, anyone excel at this? The more I thought about the statement that they will know we are Christians by our love the more I have questioned if this is an accurate state of the overall Christian church. There are plenty of people I love, as is true of most Christians, but as a church body are we reaching out to others with love, especially to others that we disagree with?
That is what I question, and if we don’t reach out with loving arms why would a non-believer want to become a follower of Christ when we fall so short of this command
More and more lately I see articles, often online, that seek to condemn people in the name of Christianity. This seems too often be directed at a groups of people that have differing opinions of mainstream Christianity. Jesus hated sin, but loved the sinner. We seem to have a hard time with this, but we all struggle with sin, we all fall short without Jesus.
“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” Romans 3:23 (NIV)
I think we need to remember to love more and leave the rest to God.
God can do amazing things through love! We need to remember that we don’t need to do it all. In the book Red Letter Revolution (which I won through this blog) I love where it quotes Billy Graham, “It’s the Holy Spirit’s job to convict, God’s job to judge, and my job to love.”
Let’s start a revolution today that begins with each one of us asking God to help us love our enemies, to show others kindness even when their beliefs are not in keeping with ours. Let us lead them to Christ by our love. Let them know we are Christians by our love .
Mickie DeVries lives with her husband Luke of 12 years and their two children Alex and Rylie. She is a stay at home mom that has a passion for photography, reading, scrapbooking, and God. You can follow her photography blog at Fresh Modern Photography.
Photo Credit: Meg VanKampen Studios