Being Love In Action

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Being Love In Action
Shannon King, Charity Director
I heard once that Christ had called us to be love in action. It really spoke to me. Love in action. I like that, in fact, I love it. It has become one of my favorite ideals. How are we supposed to love and why? What does it mean to be love in action?
I really thought this would be much easier to write about but I found myself struggling to get a concept into words. I can identify it when I see it. I know how to execute it, but to explain it… This was harder than I had anticipated. So, I went searching for scripture to help me get this out. I needed some divine inspiration. It really boils down to the golden rule – treat others as you would like to be treated. This is a little about what the Bible says about love in action.
1 John 3:18, “Little children, we must stop expressing love merely by our words and manner of speech; we must love also in action and in truth.” 
John 13:34, “A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so also you must love one another.”
Galatians 5: 14, “For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Galatians 6:2, “Carry one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the Law of Christ.”
Let’s mush that all together. This is in my own words of course. Throughout the Old Testament we are given lots of rules and commandments. When Christ arrived he said, you know what? I’m giving you a new law. Love each other the way I love you. How does Christ love us? He loves us like a parent loves their child – unconditionally. Don’t just talk about it or say it, get out there and DO something about it. Help each other out in hard times and if you do this you are doing right by me.
Together we can make the world a better place. It’s easy to get consumed with our own issues and struggles. We often think we can’t get involved with other people’s plights because we are so burdened with our own stuff. The thing is that we are all one family. We, the people, together, make our family and our community and our country and our world a wonderful place to be. We don’t need to go through our hardships alone. We are supposed to look out for each other. There is more than enough to go around. We all have a little to give. We wouldn’t want to see our child hungry or sick or depressed. We love them unconditionally and want them to be happy and healthy. We are instructed want this for each other also. You may be thinking, well I already do. But, what are you doing to back it up? Going on social media and clicking “like” on a post doesn’t do anything. Let’s be honest. It makes us feel better and we feel supportive but we are only “expressing love merely by our words and manner of speech; we must love also in action and in truth.” (1 John 3:18). I don’t see clicking “like” as an action or deed. I do it, but this isn’t enough. We need to take action.
How do we then become or express love in action? We give, we volunteer, we listen, we offer support. It can be any number of ways. You might see your elderly neighbor come home from the grocery. You think about all of the grocery bags, see them struggling to hold a bag in one hand while clinging to the railing as they climb the porch stairs. Now you watch as they try to open the door. Stop sitting there watching to see what happens while feeling bad for them. Get up and go out there! Offer to help. You might not make it in time or they might decline your offer but you showed unconditional love for your neighbor by acting to lighten their burden. Not only that, but now they feel like they matter. They feel like their neighbors are looking out for them. Now they feel less alone. You just gave them a big gift and probably made their entire day! That’s love in action.
I saw this article the other day and instantly thought, this is love in action. It brought tears to my eyes. There was a man in London who climbed over the railing of a bridge to jump to his death. Members of the public saw him and rushed to his side. They held him so he wouldn’t end his life. They even roped him in to support him as they got tired. He was amid his dark night of the soul, but total strangers showed him unconditional love with their actions. It took two hours for police and fire to arrive and get him down safely. They stayed with him. They protected him. They showed him that he mattered when he thought no one cared. What did they give? They gave love, unconditional love.
I ask you to think about the ideal of “love in action”. Think about what that means to you. Watch for it. Identify it when you see it. Begin to put that into practice in your own life. If we all act from a place of love and show each other a bit more patience, a bit more understanding, a bit more compassion, we will all be lifted up. Helping someone else isn’t just for them. It’s a gift to yourself as well.

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