Loving in deed and in truth
Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God. Even if we feel guilty, God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything. 1 John 3:18-20 NLT
“Talk is cheap” is a saying we attribute to a person who committed to do something, yet only to find out that he or she reneged. Christian love is loving in deed and in truth. John says from the text, “Our actions will show that we belong to the truth.” True children of God will know that they belong to the truth because they will be sincere and live in accordance with the truth of God’s Word. They will follow through in their commitments. One way that will help us not to break our commitment is to be constantly aware that we will “stand before God.” And John says that we should be “confident when we stand before God” for we know that our fellowship is with God and we belong to Him. We came to Jesus and responded to His call for salvation for we know He is sincere to His offer to us. “‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!’” (Luke 15:6-7). We know that God’s love cost Him a great deal for He gave His only begotten Son to die for our sin (see John 3:16). Our love for others is genuine for we do not expect something in return for we know that the by-product of our action is more than compensate to the sacrifice we had shown. “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much!... Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap” (Luke 6:32-33, 38). There will be moments when we fail to demonstrate our love for others and then a guilty conscience disturbs us. And when our consciences accuse us for our lack of love toward our brother or sister, we should not despair instead let us turn to God for “God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything” (1 John 3:20). Then pray just like how the Psalmist prayed asking God for mercy (see Psalm 139:23-24), and once reassured, let us strive by God’s grace that we will love others as we love ourselves.