Loving everyone doesn’t sound possible to you and me, but daily life delivers an invitation and challenge to give it a go. You don’t need to speak from a platform to share the gospel and you don’t need to deliver a three-point sermon to demonstrate the love you’ve received from Jesus. Sometimes a simple smile will suffice.
Green: Smile and say hello to someone who you don’t know today.
Amber: Use social media to share a Bible verse that communicates God’s love for those who love him and those who don’t.
Red: Engage someone in conversation and explain to them that they too are loved by God.
‘He answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind”; and, “Love your neighbour as yourself.”’ (Luke 10:27 NIV)
My friends might think it’s a bit weird, but I often find myself in conversation with complete strangers. This is partly because I like people and partly because I know that I am loved, ask Jesus to fill me with His love regularly, and am called to share His love with those around me.
I like going to the supermarket, not only because it contains cheese, but because it has people in it that I perceive to be my neighbours. In the wider context of today’s verse from Luke, Jesus goes on to expose the heart of a religious leader who was trying to test Him. He challenges him to love everyone he meets no matter who they are or what they are like (a massive task).
One of those times that I was in the supermarket chatting, a staff member heard me talking about Jesus. To say they hated Jesus would be somewhat of an understatement. They railed for a good minute or two as I stood there thinking how unlikeable this person was. Then for some reason I smiled. I don’t know why; maybe it was the Holy Spirit (come to think of it I possibly looked a bit odd). But when I started smiling, the person stopped. I was then able to explain that they were loved by God even if they didn’t love him.
This sparked another discourse, but since that day, whenever we meet in the supermarket, that person and I will often have a bit of Jesus banter and, I trust, they know the truth behind our conversation – that they are loved. I haven’t shared the gospel with them (yet), I haven’t bought them a coffee (yet), but I have shown them some love.
Simon is a child of God, husband to Sophie, father to Reuben and he enjoys sharing the gospel at King’s Church in Oxted, Surrey.
Today’s charity is: London City Mission
London City Mission exists to serve the church of London in sharing the love of God and the good news of Jesus Christ with the least reached of London.