Love and Acceptance
As the world gets busier and more complex, it's easy to forget the importance of love and acceptance. But as Bob Goff says, "Most people need love and acceptance a lot more than they need advice." As followers of Jesus, we are called to be a source of love and acceptance for those around us. Let's take a moment to reflect on this powerful message and find ways to incorporate it into our daily lives.
In 1 Corinthians 13:1-3, the Apostle Paul writes, "If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing." This passage reminds us that love is the foundation of all good things in life. Without love, even the most impressive accomplishments are empty and meaningless.
There are countless examples in the Bible of Jesus showing love and acceptance to those around Him. In John 8:1-11, a woman caught in adultery is brought before Jesus. The religious leaders want to stone her to death, but Jesus responds with love and forgiveness. He says to the woman, "Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more." In this moment, Jesus shows that love and acceptance can be more potent than judgment and punishment.
It's important to remember that love and acceptance don't always come naturally to us. We live in a world that often values success and achievement above all else. But as Christians, we are called to a higher standard. We are called to love our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:31) and to treat others as we would like to be treated (Luke 6:31).
We can incorporate love and acceptance into our daily lives by focusing on building relationships with those around us. We can really listen to others and offer them encouragement and support. We can look for ways to serve others and show them they are valued and appreciated.
Another way we can show love and acceptance is by practicing forgiveness. It's easy to hold grudges and focus on the negative aspects of others. Still, as followers of Jesus, we are called to forgive as we have been forgiven (Colossians 3:13). When we forgive others, we show them that we value them as individuals and are willing to let go of hurt and resentment.
In conclusion, let's take Bob Goff's words to heart and prioritize love and acceptance in our lives. Let's look for ways to build relationships with those around us, practice forgiveness, and show others they are loved and valued. As we do so, we will be living out the call of Christ to love one another as He has loved us (John 15:12).
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Dr. Rob Weinstein is the Founding/Senior Pastor of Bethany Grace Community Church in Bridgeton, NJ. He is also a Professor of Business Studies/Academic Director/Chair of Human Resource Management Studies. He is the Founder of the M25 Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to ending homelessness and food insecurity in Cumberland County, NJ.
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