A “Yes” of Love
January 23, 2018
Read: 1 John 3:16–24
Bible in a Year: Exodus 7–8; Matthew 15:1–20
Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.—1 John 3:18
On August 21, 2016, Carissa posted photos on social media of a devastating flood in Louisiana. The next morning she included a note from someone in the flooded area pleading for help. Five hours after that, she and her husband, Bobby, sent out a call for others to join them on their 1,000-mile trip to provide help. Less than twenty-four hours later, thirteen people were on their way to serve those whose homes had been severely damaged.
What motivates people to drop everything and drive seventeen hours to move appliances, do demolition work, and provide hope in a place they’ve never been before? It’s love.
Think about this verse, which she posted along with her call for help: “Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this” (Psalm 37:5). This is especially true when we follow God’s call to help. The apostle John said, “If anyone . . . sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?” (1 John 3:17). It may be a daunting task—but we have God’s promise of help when we “do what pleases him” (v. 22).
When a need arises, we can honor God by being willing to offer a “yes” of love to what we sense He is asking us to do for others. —Dave Branon
Lord, please open our eyes to the needs of others, open our hearts to those people, and open our hands so we can provide help in the time of need.
We show God’s love when we are willing to help others; we show His strength when we take on the task He gives us to do.
INSIGHT: Like John in today’s passage, James calls us to action, saying our desire to help others arises out of faith: “What good is it . . . if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds?” (James 2:14). If we tell those in need, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed” without first meeting their physical needs, what does that accomplish? He urges, “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” (vv. 15-17). John echoes, “How can the love of God be in that person” who “sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them?” (1 John 3:17). Our loving actions flow out of our faith and the empowering love of God inside us.
How might God be calling you to help someone? Alyson Kieda
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