By Jenna Walmer
“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in LOVE. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.” Romans 12:9-16
Our society as a whole has developed a way to pretend to love each other. Every day we see it, but do we do something about it? We may even partake in this action, but do we notice it? At some point in my life, I have even fallen into the trap of insincerity when it comes to radically loving others. Walking through the halls at school and at work or down the streets at college, we witness people “being fake” with each other, as it was called in immature high school days. Many people do it; we talk badly about others behind our friend’s backs for some reason or another. I have seen it in teenagers all the way to adulthood.
But God calls us to a different type of love, a love that is pure and genuine. As Jarrod McKenna addressed us at National Youth Conference, he touched on this different type of love, before challenging us to become Dunker Punks. In Romans 12, Paul explains to the Romans how to sincerely love others. Verses 9-10 state, “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” In order to love another above ourselves, we need to concentrate deeply on our intents, taking time out of our schedule and providing our money for those in need.
Essentially, there are two reasons why people show love to others. The typical reasons, and people’s ulterior motive to love others, lead people to extrinsic rewards such as money and other rewards. However, as Christians and humans who want to love others sincerely, we want to strive for no hidden messages when we love others. Since we are creatures of peace-striving and enemy-loving, we do not want rewards. We love people because they were created in God’s image, they are our brothers and sisters in Christ, and they are unique.
This is why we are told today, and the Romans were told approximately 2000 years ago, to “live in harmony with one another” (Romans 12:16). As Christians and seekers of an unconventional love, we are meant to love everyone from the financially unstable to the rich, from the young to the old, from the poor in spirit to the most pious of people, from black to white, and from male to female. Paul states, “Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.” He encourages the Romans to create diversity, and this should inspire us to do the same.
In this world where people hate others and create seclusion because of it, it is time for us, the Dunker Punk revolution and the Brethren faith, to step out against it. It is time to start living in harmony with others and showing love to those in need of its power. It is time to break down the barriers of race, religion,age,age, and status in order to create an accepting and diverse community. It is time to be stop pretending to love and start being real with people. It is time.
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