Let Us Love One Another

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Mendi Love in Sierra Leone (2005) – photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

If the world is to survive we have to figure out how to love one another. White people have to learn how to love black people. Muslims have to learn how to love Christians and Jews as well as vice versa. The old must learn to love the young and the young must learn to love the elderly. The ecosystems of the world require human love for the environment. Somehow we have to learn how to rise above our fears, hatred and distain for one another.

In the light of the conflict that seems to be happening on every corner of the world – all at the same time, it could make one wonder if there is any hope for humanity. I read the words of John which seem so powerful, “let us love one another!” How can we love people who hate us? How can we love when we feel betrayed and abused? How can we love one another when love seems so elusive and difficult to find, hold and grow?

John reminds us that love is from God and those who love are born of God and know God. One of the things that bother me is that sometimes people who believe in God can be so hateful. We start with our faith in God and sometimes can become so vigorous in our devotion that we excuse hate under the flag of faith in God.

Faith in God requires the capacity to love. Once we lose our desire to love one another we never reach the level that the Lord expects of us. Love can be a challenge, but this is what God wants us to do: to love one another, when others do not love in return. I encourage you to read the following verse from John and ask yourself the following questions regarding the challenge of loving when love is difficult.

Jesus Christ loved the world all the way to his death on a cross. The profound love of Jesus which loved us to the grave so that you and I might have life everlasting is the most complex love the world has ever known. If you want to know God, you have to learn how to love- even people who are so different and so unique.

1 John 3: Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God[1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What does it mean to “Love one another”?
  2. What are some of the most challenging elements of loving one another?
  3. How do we cause love to grow?

 

Prayer:

Lord, help me to learn how to love. Free me from my doubt. Free me from my fears. Humble my spirit so I might encourage love to grow. Teach me to communicate. Teach me to share my feelings. Show me how to listen. Show me how to feel the spirit that flows from heart to heart. Help me to move beyond race and religion. Help me to see the best in others. Grant me the courage to stand up for truth, fight for those things that are pure and true, and to link hearts and minds with people of good will from all walks of life. Help us to love without thought of love in return. Help us to search for the best, hope for the best and live for the best. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior we pray. Amen.

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Hood at http://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

 

More about Nicholas Hood III Ministries at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. 1989 (1 Jn 4:7). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.