“Everyone who loves is born of God.” 1Jn 4:7 NKJV
Recently a twelve-year-old boy in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, hung himself. Why? Because the next day was his first day at a new school, he was overweight, and he dreaded being taunted by other children. Few things are more painful than shame. One of the greatest kindnesses we can show others is to take away their false shame through love and acceptance. When the disciples met a man who was blind from birth they asked Jesus, “Was it a result of his own sins or those of his parents?” (Jn 9:2 TLB). They weren’t concerned that the man needed help or that he’d spent his life in total darkness. No, they started discussing his shortcomings—right in front of him! It’s easier to label people than love them. We label things because we think we know what’s inside, and we label people for the same reason. We’d rather debate homosexuality than befriend someone who’s gay, condemn divorce than help its victims, argue about abortion than support an orphanage, or gripe about social services than help the poor. Jesus didn’t see this blind man as a victim of fate, he saw him as an opportunity waiting to happen. He said to His disciples, “You’re looking for someone to blame…Look instead for what God can do” (Jn 9:3 TM). If you don’t love people, you don’t love God; actually, you don’t even know Him! You need to pray, “Lord, remind me today that the greatest gift I have to give others, is Your love.” When you get serious and begin to pray that way, people will open up to God’s help and healing.
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