Let Us Love in Actions and in Truth
by Mark Votava
It seems to me that sometimes our theology keeps us from loving others. I am coming to see that any theology that does not lead me to love others is destructive. God is love. God is not judgement, condemnation and fear.
In my own life I am understanding more how God calls us beloved. We are loved by God because we are unique and there is no one else is like us in the entire world. I like that thought! Our creator is abounding in loving kindness and leads us to make the space to be an expression of compassion into the world we live in.
- Let us love with actions and truth
“Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth …” (1 John 3:18).
- Making space for others in our lives
The actions we need to love in truth have a lot to do with making space for others in our lives. Without making space for others we cannot listen to them, be present with them, see the value and mystery within them, or sacrifice for them. All of this takes time to develop, and we must put a priority on being in relationship like this in the parish. Nothing else will do for the body of Christ in the particulars of everyday life.
- Too busy
As Hugh Feiss states so clearly, “If we are too busy to make time for people who need us, whether they are strangers or neighbors, there is something wrong with our priorities …”
- Having no time to be relational in everyday life
We must not be too busy for others. We must instead allow the communal imagination to set the priorities in our lives together. How tragic when the body of Christ does not have time to be relational in everyday life.
- Love one another
“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us …” (1 John 4:11-12).
- In our own uniqueness
Loving one another in the parish entails making space for each other in our own uniqueness. This must become a priority to all in the body of Christ.
- Basic universal acts of love
“To merely welcome another, to provide for him or her, to make a place,” Dallas Willard writes, “is one of the most life-giving and life-receiving things a human being can do. They are the basic universal acts of love. Our lives were meant to be full of such acts …”
- The most meaningful thing we can do
The most meaningful thing we can do as the body of Christ is to make space in our lives for others out of love. This is relational and this promotes love. Our lives should be full of love for others as we become an expression of Christ’s life here on earth in the place that we share life with others.
How can we make space for others in our lives?