June 18 - 1 John 3:11-15. The World

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

June 18 - 1 John 3:11-15. The World

For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.  Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous. Do not be surprised, my brothers and sisters, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.

One lesson I learned from my mother was that if it seemed everyone around me was wrong and I was the only one who was right, I might want to step back and look at the situation again.  There was every possibility that the majority was right and I was in the wrong.  That’s been a useful lesson throughout the years, but it doesn’t apply in a case like this.

Another lesson I learned from her was that sometimes the people you most want to impress aren’t going to like you because they’re jealous of you.  For a little girl in elementary school, it was difficult to be smart and well-liked by the teachers – especially when your class only has 23 people in it.  Half of that class were boys and they all liked me fine – they weren’t competing with me for anyone’s attention.  Out of the half that were girls, half of them were friends with me, but they weren’t the popular girls. That clique of girls was impossible to break into.  It got worse as we grew older.  But, mom made sure that when I got home from school, I knew I was loved and I was respected.

Those two lessons sometimes seem as though they are at odds. But, if you look at the first lesson, the majority vote changes when you’re standing with God.  If you love as He tells you to love, it doesn’t matter if the world hates you or if they disagree with you.  When God is involved … that’s always the correct side to be standing on.

In looking at the second lesson … that one actually lines right up with John’s words.  Sometimes people are simply going to be mean.  They’re like jealous, petty little girls who don’t want to see you living in a right relationship with someone as big and amazing as God.  They’ll do anything they can to hurt you during the day.  Fortunately, our support system is even stronger than what I had with Mom.

We should love one another … no matter what the world says.  It might seem like it’s difficult, like everyone is against us, but when we have God on our side, He’s also got our backs.