Written by Tika Siburt
I’ve always been jealous of people who are kind; people who are genuinely sweet natured and loving. They say girls are made of sugar and spice and everything nice. If I were to guess, I’m pretty sure I was made with two servings of spice and a nice dash of sass. Being a kind and loving person does not always come naturally to me. I get irritated with people who walk too slow while I’m trying to get home from work. I’m terrible at turning the other cheek when someone is rude to me. If I don’t agree with someone, I tend to get twisted in rant after rant after rant. It’s very ironic since I’m a firm believer that Christianity’s roots lie in the simple fact that we were made to love. Not only that, but we were made to love everyone. Everyone. And trust me, I understand how daunting that sounds.
There are many lessons in the Bible that we push as the most important; and though we know love is important, we tend to forget just how much. Jesus definitely recognizes our forgetfulness because He reminds us eleven times in the New Testament to love one another. Eleven reminders… Eleven. And yet we still don’t always seem to get it.
I work in our children’s ministry and I’m always jealous of the simplicity of a child’s faith. They know Jesus loves them, they know they are supposed to love each other, they don’t question why we love; they just do. Sit down, spend some time with them, gain their trust, and they will love you. We were made to love. We were made to love everyone. We were made to love everyone no matter their race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, or age. We were made to love just as Jesus loves. No one is worthy of the Father’s love and grace and yet, we all receive it. All of us. Every single person.
Love isn’t easy but it’s the core of Christianity. It’s what drives the power of the Holy Spirit. “We love, because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19) It’s easier said than done.
So if you’re not naturally America’s Sweetheart, don’t fret. Challenges are what help our faith grow even stronger. I know I need to forgive a little faster and not judge so quickly. I know that loving people is much more powerful than hating them. Hate destroys the spirit; love restores. I want my spirit restored. I want to show people Jesus by loving them, not condemning them. It is with love that we can start a movement, make permanent changes in this world, and change lives. We were made to love. Every person. Always.