Date: Friday, July 25
Scripture: 1 John 4:7-12, 19-21
Verse: Dear friends, let’s love each other, because love is from God, and everyone who loves is born from God and knows God. (1 John 4:7)
When I was a high school student, one of the favorite songs of our youth group was “They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love,” which has the memorable chorus, “And they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes they’ll know we are Christians by our love.” While I would never subject our current youth group to the song, I have always liked the lines of that chorus. What better thing is there to be known by? If only we were known by the way we love. What a difference that might make.
In today’s reading we find John making the same point. We cannot call ourselves Christians and not love others. He goes on to say that the best way we can show our love for God, is by loving the people around us. That is not to say it is easy. Sometimes people hurt us, offend us, battle us, and we find them difficult to love. But what if we thought of it the other way around? Rather than withholding love because of another’s actions, maybe our love could change their attitude. That is the way God loved us, and changed us.
That goofy, highly repetitive song from the 60s had it right. Sure, people might know we go to church, or that we have read the Bible, but the way they will actually know we are Christians is by the way we love. May we be people who love first.
Prayer: Give me strength, Lord Jesus, to love those who are difficult to love. Amen.
Action: Love on someone today.
Respond: What was your favorite song/hymn from your younger years, even though you might not sing it now?
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