“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.”
1 John 4:7-8 (ESV)
If I said ‘I love you’, would you believe me?
Loving our brothers and sisters isn’t something we think about, we just do because of the physical and emotional ties we have with them. These ties develop over the years as they have existed in our sphere (even when not physically there). Now take that to the streets; or rather the neighbour next door and it’s a different situation entirely.
The dictionary defines a stranger as ‘a person who you have no personal acquaintance with’ or in very plain English, ‘a person who is not a member of the family’.
When a stranger enters into our sphere of comfort, within a split second, our mind has already said “back off child, you’re all over my space” (or something along those lines), often though, this is not the first thought we would rather have and it disappears as quickly as it came when we realise that all they wanted were directions to a train station. C’mon now, you know at some point a thought like that has crossed your mind when a stranger approached you. My hands are up; I know I’ve been guilty.
Loving a stranger is as simple as opening up our sphere of influence, and sharing the love which has been freely given to us. In John 3:16, our bible says, “For God so loved the world that He gave…” You love by giving hence your words becomes just mere words. A “thank you” card to the postman who has delivered your mail for years, working with the youths in your neighbourhood, or a cup of tea or cool drink for that man you pass by on your way to work are examples of how you can show love to a stranger nearby.
“But I’m doing it already”, you may say. Good. As a matter of fact, I applaud you ecstatically from the bottom of my heart and I say keep it up. Everyone one earth has a heart to love and we show even more of this when we immerse ourselves in the Word and love of God that it becomes like a stream from Lebanon.
An example of what love/good human nature can achieve is seen with the riots that took place recently in some cities around the UK. After the rioters had smashed and grabbed all they could and left businesses and home-owners to pick-up the scraps; hundreds of volunteers turned up, united with their brooms in hand, to clean up the streets. City workers set-up a website to raise money for an 81year-old barber whose shop was broken into, and encouragement was given where it was needed. Read more about this HERE.
This goes to show that we have the capacity to love others, like we love ourselves.
So can I challenge you to open up your sphere and give a little love to that old man trying to walk up the stairs or that sister who don’t have enough change for her bus ride? Go on, share some love. HUGS?
*Picture by Google*