Does the world see love when they come into your church?
Do they see
Bickering among members
Mumbling about the type of music: contemporary versus traditional hymns
Unforgiveness between people
All talk but not walking the walk
All prettied up and proper for Sunday church but arguing all the way in the car
People so busy they've no time to sit and talk or counsel and pray
A church performance with inspirational messages and awesome singers to entertain
Or do they see
People who greet newcomers and ask their name and try to remember
A genuine concern for one another
Kindness towards one another
A belief in the power of prayer as the members pray for one another
Christ lifted up and all glory given to Him
Reading from the Bible and people actually opening up their Bibles
These are just a few examples that came to my mind. I'm sure you could add many more.
Listen to what the Bible says in John 13:35 (New International Version)
"By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."
When people in the church truly love one another, there will be a difference. What does love look like?
"Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love." Ephesians 4:2 (NIV)
I believe the world would take notice if they truly saw something different in us. Love one another in action ...causes people to notice.
All too often the world hears dramatized stories of Christians who have fallen and sinned. Another reason to not join that group of hypocrites.
But I've personally experienced the love of God through other believers recently. I wonder how people get through their trials and challenges without a personal relationship with the Lord? Or without the love of friends and family who live out their faith?
Do you have any stories or examples you care to share?