Love your neighbor

Division- the action of separating something into parts or the process of being separated; disagreement between two or more groups, typically producing tension or hostility

If you’re like me, you are growing steadily tired of the rhetoric that 2020 has brought.  Everything that has happened that is in some form considered drastic has done one thing to this nation: divide us.

Mask vs no mask. Republican vs Democrat. Black vs White.

Evil takes many forms. Evil can take any situation and transform it into what it wants.  Evil thrives on division. The more tension, hostility, and chaos that is involved the easier it is for evil to come in.    

If you take a look at the events that have occurred so far this year and don’t see a recuring theme of turning neighbors against neighbors, you have turned a blind eye to the world.  There are physical and spiritual forms of evil that have wreaked havoc in these past few months.  I mean, who would have thought that people would lose their mind over someone not wearing a mask while on a walk outside in 2019?

At the core of these events is the virus. This virus has caused possibly the greatest division we will see in our lifetimes on many levels.  One of the largest effects of this virus has been in the form of social distancing which in fact has divided communities.  There is a reason that divorces and suicides have risen during these times.  We have lost contact with our neighbors, brothers and sisters. We have been influenced by what the media wants us too believe is factual and right.  We have let this influence of these media outlets effect us in a way that we have turned to the idea that our own opinion, based off of others biased opinions, is in fact 100% true.  With nothing to do, no church to attend, no community events, we have all become glued to social media, the news, and many other forms of news networks. 

All of these forms of communication have taken us away from two things. 1. The real truth: the Bible and 2. How to love your neighbor

There is one certainty in this life: we will die at some point.  One of my favorite lines from any movie comes from “Open Range.” Kevin Costner playing a cowboy role gives this quote:

“there’s things that gnaw at a man worse than dying”

Whatever you believe about the virus, conspiracy theories or not, the facts are that, yes, it can kill you, but there are millions of other things that can do that job.  If we were to worry about every little thing in our life that might take us out permanently, we would die of exhaustion.  Maybe, the virus brought the realization that death is real and fear was the reaction to this realization.  Living your life in fear is no way to live.  Fear keeps us from giving and experiencing love.       

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. We love because he first loved us.”1st John 4:18-19

Will love cure the virus? Strangely enough, I would say yes.  Even if it isn’t the virus itself, the side effects from the reactions to the virus can be cured.  I come at this from what I know as 100% truth and fact.  I know that pure love can do many things. Heal leprosy, bring men back from the dead, and make the crippled walk.  I know these things because I know the Truth.  Will you helping your neighbor mow their yard make the virus disappear? Probably not. But you know what it will do. It will bring love.  The light that loves brings into a room can leave darkness packing it’s bags and heading for the door.  

We as a nation need to love our neighbor.  We may not agree on everything or anything at all, but that should have no effect on how we treat each other.   

Evil can take hold of even the strongest of relationships when a crack in the foundation of that relationship occurs.  Evil has found its way into politics, media outlets, communities, and relationships.  Evil must be eradicated. Love drives out evil. 

I love my friends. I love my family. I love my brothers.  There are not many things I wouldn’t do for any of these people.  I may not agree with everything they believe in, but that does not change how I treat them. 

You never know what someone is going through.  Love has unimaginable power.  Love can be shown through the simplest of acts. 

Go out and love your neighbor.