By Our Love
They will know us by our love.
Never has this sentence made more sense in my life than this last semester of my life.
I have been blessed. I grew up in a Christian family and was involved in our local church, speech and debate, and of course, TeenPact. Each of these groups are intertwined with believers. Love was never something that I was short of receiving and something I did not find hard to give out either. It was a normal reaction. A habit.
Last fall, I moved to North Dakota to play volleyball for Bismarck State College. Things changed quickly as I was in an unfamiliar environment, something I had never before experienced. It was your typical college atmosphere– though the weather was about ten times colder than I am comfortable with! Going into the semester, I knew life would change and that my faith would be something I would really have to strive for. I never knew just how much I would have to strive, however.
At church, the pastor would talk about how we as Christians need to be constantly in the Word, watering our faith so we don’t come to church parched. I loved that reminder, and it was something I kept up with. After coming back to school from Christmas break I had made a choice to potentially transfer to another school next fall.
Then something hit me.
It was a question–a simple question.
Had I held on to faith and and personal refreshment just to feel good about myself, or had I been a light to my teammates and friends at school?
John 13:35 says “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
I wasn’t sure just how I could share my faith with my team, but this I knew: I sure know how to love people. After God brought me to this passage, my heart changed. He showed me a way to spread the gospel to people who had never experienced life in Christ. If this passage is true, which I know it is, then sharing my faith does not have to be so daunting.
I went from being upset when a person wronged me, to turning the other cheek and showing them love. From not wanting to help someone with Biology homework, to staying up till 1:00 a.m. to help them study for an exam.
Matthew 5:41 says “If anyone forces you to go with them one mile, go with them two.” Not only are we called to love our brothers, but we are to LOVE them.
Loving someone can be humorously easy, and I challenge you to consciously consider if you show people love. Love ought to be normal thing, not just something we do because we are told, but something we truly take joy in doing.
Remember: they will know we are Christians by our love.