The verses from 1 John 4:7-10, "Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins".
In the New Living Translation these verses tell me a different story and that being more of instructions, for those people who call themselves Christians. The way we should conduct our selves before God and before our fellow man. It speaks of how we as "so called Christians" need to act, think and feel about the Holy Trinity, about ourselves and about the world around us.
Oh don't get me wrong. These verses speak volumes in relation to how we should conduct ourselves, it is a list of do and don't. As an example we read in this message of how we should be like children, always before God. It tells us where love truly comes from, it speaks of what we should do with that gift that has been given to each of us. The verse speaks of sacrifice and devotion and respect. It speaks of "real love" not superficial love such as we find in the carnal world.
I have to say that the word love is probably, if not definitely, one of the most misused words in any language, in the world. Such as when we say we love that color or I would love to have those or even I love the fact that it is the weekend. We can even take it a step further by inserting it to I love this,or I love that and the famous, I love you. What I am getting at is that we don't always use the word in a proper since thus causing the word it's self to sound and become, trite.
If you, call yourself a Christian then why complain, why pick, and why be little others? Why do you, start to "gossip" the moment church services are over, even before you have left the inside of the sanctuary. Isn't the "sanctuary" a Holy place that should be a place to edify God and have peace among the congregates? Is that the way we should show the secular world that is watching every move we make, the example of respect and of love? Isn't the actions of ourselves important enough to us personally and worth showing God our Father, that gave us His only son, Jesus, worth pleasing and showing at least some form of righteousness from us to Him?
If you ask me I think that disrupting the sanctuary and even selling items in the foyer is comparable by example as to what caused Jesus to bring a point home to the people by over turning the tables at the temple. I do think that or Lord Jesus Christ is taking notes, as to how we, so called professed Christians, treat the sanctity of his house, be it where ever that place of worship is held. For is it not true that when two or more are gathered in His name, so is He. If this is true and we all know it is, should we not respect others who might be trying to meditate and pray to Father, before, during and after the services? I do think that Jesus, if he were physically present, speaking metaphorically or rather spiritually I'm sure Christ would have something to say about it, maybe even to the point of over turning a few more tables in order to get our attention.
I don't know about you, but I surly do not want to see the wrath of God sweep through my life, my path or my house in a rage for something as petty as disrespect, when it is something that is within our personal control to rectify or at least under this example. Though when you look at it, isn't showing respect away of showing "Genuine Love", To show God who is so deserving, and for our fellow brothers and sisters who are trying to be tolerant, surly if it were you that was being talked about or disrespected, you would be offended, and want to speak up.
It seems not, it seems folks think that others are wrong for saying something and usually they turn around and become, the next target of your gossip or at least an attitude of "well", who do they think they are, to speak to me that way, as a thought or comment under the breath.
I ask you, is that showing LOVE? Is that the example that you want associated with being Christian? Isn't being a true Christian to be likened to be "Christ Like', in all that we do, say and are?
Folks wonder why other people do the things they do, that shows disrespect in some ways, and wonder why they were not brought up better or with more discipline, which when you think about it, the word discipline, does it not mean the capacity for keeping one's actions under close control? To me that is away of showing love rather than saying it.
I believe we as true Christians need to take a real hard look at ourselves and put ourself in another's shoes so to speak, and see how we act in other peoples eyes or for that matter in Gods eyes.
We should care what other people think, because it is by example, kinda like the example that Jesus tried to "SHOW" us, how to be and what comes from within us that causes, others to react, or not react to except or not to except or even to become or not to become "a Christian".
We are to be helping others who are not Christian, find the way to be a Christian and live a Christian like lifestyle, to bring them or at least help them understand what the meaning of being called Christian is, all about. For if we truly act the way we should, that being by example, as the light on the table for all to see, then it is most probably the single most thing we can DO, to show the living act and true meaning of Love thy neighbor as thy self and, do onto others as you would what them to do onto you.
All I am talking about folks is that we all know what the right thing to do is, and we all know that we as Christians have power over, and that is, the evil things of this world. That is if and only if you want to have power over it. Sometimes I'm not so sure, but we all have the capability to master it over time and I'm sure if we ask Jesus to help us over come adversity, temptation, greed, gossip and an oldie but a goody, "attitude", we will be, not just saying that we love God or others, but proving to the world that we have over come the things of this world and we will not be telling God that we love him and that we are sorry and yet keep doing the same old thing again, and again. But we will have even "proven" to the Holy Trinity the we are "worthy" of the gift that is true love.
Well I'm here to tell you that peace, devotion and love starts with you. No one else, just you, for it is you and only you that can change your attitude, and your lifestyle even if it were with little baby steps in the right direction. Trust me when I say, that the world will take notice and so will God. Also, by doing so don't we show the world that through genuine love and respect for all things which are Holy, that the example of the act, in it's self, which is discipline, also shows what true LOVE is?
I do believe so, and nothing else would ever have to be "said", for our actions "will speak louder than our words".
Rev.Dr. Andrew R. M. Manley D.D. / Chaplain...