It’s hard when you feel voiceless.
This world seems to just keep on turning, the way it always has. Sure, we have our problems—but when has that not been the case? The world is not young, but its end may not yet be upon us, either. There’s innovation alongside poverty, and perversion next to beauty—the way it’s been since the Fall.
But what if I told you a secret?
I recently read a blog post in which the author chided those Christians who believe the apocalypse is upon us as “immature.” I think this blanket statement was a bit hasty, even if I did see his point. My friends, I believe this generation could well be the one that witnesses the Lord’s return. If He tarries, though, this generation will pass like all others before it. However, I do not believe either of these situations should cause us to bash people over the head with the Word, shut down in fear, or—worst of all—become apathetic. Whether our Lord should return or tarry a bit longer, I see our Commander as issuing the same marching orders He always has. They’re summed up in one small, four-letter word: love.
Yes, love. Love your God (Deuteronomy 6:5), love your neighbor (Mark 12:31), and love your enemy (Matthew 5:44-45). Here is the secret: this is our calling. And I have hope, for I see many who are chasing after that calling with all that is within them. But what does love look like?
Our secular culture tells us through songs, books, and movies that love is something more akin to animal passion, fueled by chemicals in the brain; a feeling, and only that, serving to feed pleasure and (sometimes) reproduction, with no higher purpose. This, then, is a love of another world and tongue—God’s.
Faith without works is dead (James 2:17). It is the same with love. It is not enough to simply say you believe in God or love the people in your life. Faith, hope, love—these things may be accompanied by strong emotions at times, but they themselves are not emotions. They are choices—conscious choices, choices made regardless of the circumstances or consequences.
The love of God is made manifest in truth and self-sacrifice. It gives of itself when it does not understand, even and especially when it hurts. It is patient. It is kind. It’s tough when it needs to be. It protects. It trusts. It hopes. It does not seek to dishonor others, but to lift them up.
If we love God, we will keep His commandments (John 4:23-24). We will love our fellow man by serving him and pointing him to the love of Jesus with our lives—in words and in action. We will be the salt and light, preserving the good and eradicating the evil.
We will put on the full armor of God, tear down strongholds, demolish arguments and every proud thought that sets itself up against the knowledge of Christ, and we will wage war—not against people, not against sinners, for they also bear the image of our God—but against principalities, powers, and rulers in dark places. In doing so, we will go and do as Jesus did—setting captives free. Healing the sick. Opening the eyes of those who are blind to see the light once more. We will cleanse the lepers, make the lame able to walk in the way of truth again, and unstop the ears of the deaf to hear the truth. We will raise the dead. We will crush Satan under our feet.
And in doing so, we will find our voices. We will change the world. We will leave a legacy to our children—if we choose to love.
And we will be known by our love.