The Importance of Loving Others
Tragically, a 12-year-old boy in Florida, USA, hanged himself just because the next day was his first day at a new school and, being overweight, he couldn’t face being teased 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 because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?’ (John 9:2 NLT) 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 complain 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, ‘...This happened so the power of God can be seen in him.’ (John 9:3 NLT) 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.