Love is What We Do

1/3/2007

speech bubble representing person 4 talkingWhat do people do? I mean, people don’t always run into these things you are talking about. Even with us, we think a particular Brother among us is a little weird. We can’t understand much that he does. I think we vaguely understand, but he’s the one who pushes, “I’m not going, no. We’ll come afterward, maybe, or we’ll see them the next day, or something else.” And I’ll say, “I’m not understannnnding!” Now, we have understood; and now we appreciate him! :)

speech bubble representing person 1 talkingBut you still think he’s weird, right? :) All in favor say, “Aye” :) Jesus fried the minds of just about everybody He met. “No, I won’t wash my hands just because everybody else does” (Luke 11:38). He just didn’t play the game the way everybody thought He should. And we would want to say, “What’s the big deal? Your hands are dirty anyway, so why not go ahead and do it rather than be offensive?” But He did it right in plain sight; right in front of them, He purposely refused to do what He probably needed to do just purely for getting His hands clean.

He could have pretended and they would’ve thought of it in the ceremonial way and everything would’ve been okay. But He intentionally stirred up that hornet’s nest by refusing to do it the way men do things. And Jesus did many things like that. He could have healed that withered hand some other time than in the synagogue on the Sabbath day. All he had to do was say, “Meet me out front tomorrow and I’ll heal your hand.” :)

Jesus refused to do what men expected Him to do and it got Him killed. But He was right. And a lot of people like us happen to be the beneficiaries because He was willing to do things different than what everybody thought He should.

speech bubble representing person 3 talkingAnd Jesus probably didn’t have a lot of friends, right?

speech bubble representing person 1 talkingNot a lot of friends? Oh, you know what? You might be surprised. :) Better and deeper friends and maybe even more than you’d think. Not the same ones, though. (laughter) They’ll be different friends, probably!

speech bubble representing person 4 talkingSo, is this a good place for us to start, the six of us here?

speech bubble representing person 1 talkingTo start? Is that what you asked?

speech bubble representing person 4 talkingYes.

speech bubble representing person 1 talkingNo, you can’t. You can’t start! You either “are” or you “are not.” You either love Him already or you don’t. Okay, one-two-three, “I love you!” (laughter) You can’t start. The Real thing—you don’t start. You just love and then you love some more. You speak the truth in Love. You risk the relationship as “iron sharpening iron” (Proverbs 27:17) and “faithful are the wounds of a friend.” You risk it and you earn it by risking it, and you simply do that with more and more people.

So then you ask, “Did we start? Are we ready to start?” Well, God is already doing it! Unless the Lord builds the house its builders build in vain. (Psalm 127:1) Another tradition of men that we’ve all been convinced of is that we “start” things. We “do” things. And the reality is God’s way where we’re just friends laying down our lives for people while they’re yet sinners. And whatever is, is. “Unless the Lord builds the house its builders build in vain.”

So, you’ve already started. And what do you have? I don’t know. It depends on how deep your heart runs. However deep your heart is, that is what you have. However shallow your heart is, you don’t have. And that will be true for the rest of our lives. You can’t start anything. There’s no utopia. There’s no paradise “to have.” There’s no “right way” to do something.

God is love. The more you love, the more God you have. And when more and more people love each other that way, someone might look around and say, “Oh, it’s a church. When did you start?”

“Ummm… I don’t know. I guess when I began to love, whenever that was. Even that happens in degrees, because I didn’t know what love was and then a year later I look back and say, ‘I didn’t really love very much. But now I get it.’ And then a year later I look back and say, ‘Ohhh, I reallly didn’t love last year.’” So even that’s progressive.

So when did it start? Who knows? Who cares? Let’s just do it. Because love is something you do for Jesus’ sake, for the Lamb’s sake. And whatever you get, you get. And we’re just along for the ride.

 

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