Living Intentionally: Loving Everyone

By Jenna Walmer

Living Intentionally Focus Scriptures:

“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” – Psalm 90:12

“Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.” – Matthew 10: 39

“What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?” – Mark  8:36-37


I hope the lessons in the Sermon on the Mount started to sink in through this break from study, and I hope you have started to apply them to your everyday life!  Throughout our study of the Sermon on the Mount, one lesson stuck out to me that was repeated in many of the different sections or was hidden in each of the messages; do not build your treasures on earth, store up your treasures in heaven. This message is reiterated in more of Jesus’ teachings and even in the Old Testament. Wherever the passage is found, the orator or writer wants to remind us that our earthly days are numbered, so we should live them wisely. We should NOT cling to the rewards we are given on Earth, because they are only temporary. Instead, we should loosen this grasp to follow Jesus more fully. We will make strides to fulfilling God’s purpose, we will inherit eternal life. When you follow Jesus, you will know what it means to live abundantly, without all the extras.

This next series of posts will be centered on living intentionally, following Jesus’ teachings, and its connection to being a Dunker Punk.


Loving Everyone Focus Scripture:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. … If you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others?” – Matthew 5: 43-45, 47

“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.” -Matthew 7:12

Goal Number 1: Intentionally love everyone

Goal Number 2: Consciously think about how you are treating others and reflect on if this is how you want to be treated

Goal Number 3: Once you can accept and change yourself, help others love everyone as well

Jarrod McKenna defined dunkerpunk as “a young person who is a member of a rebellious countercultural tradition that radically commits their life to living God’s Calvary-shaped love in the power of the Spirit, to the glory of the Father.” He suggested that we are to commit our life to radical love. So,what is radical love?

It’s going against the grain in our everyday lives. It’s pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones. It’s realizing that we have not loved fully in the past, and we must change our habits to love fully now. It’s loving everyone, no matter their gender, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, or any other types of identifiers. Because, love does not judge. If God is love and God does not judge, and we want to live our lives like God’s son, then we shall love without judging.

That’s what radical loving is. Loving fully, loving without judgement, and loving everyone.

We must first start to change our hearts. Realize that we should love everyone, instead of judging others on certain characteristics. The first step should always be to change ourselves, instead of to change others.

Second, we need to notice when we are disregarding someone because of a certain aspect of their life. Instead, bring in and invite the outcasts, instead of gossiping about or disregarding them. Also, decide how you would want to be treated and have that reflect in your everyday life.

Finally, once you have changed your heart fully and intentionally love everyone, start help others noticing how to be kind to the outcasts and invite them to love everyone as well.

We are called to love boldly: To step out in faith and show those who don’t believe, believe in and hope for peace and unconditional love. Start a revolution in your area of intentionally loving everyone and treating others the way you would like to be treated.


 Jenna Walmer - Palmyra COB, Altantic Northeast DistrictJenna Walmer is from Lancaster County and is currently in 12th grade. In school, she loves to research historical events. If she were to live in a specific time period, she would want to be a hippie and live in the 60s or 70s. Her favorite past times are swimming and playing her trombone. If you want to know more about her random life, follow her on twitter: @jaymarie2100

Breaking it Down: The Sermon on the Mount Part 4

By Jenna Walmer

 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’  But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell. Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift. Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.” – Matthew 5: 21-26

This passage about being angry towards another person is hard to swallow. As I digested this section of The Sermon on the Mount, I realized that so far in my readings, this may be what I struggle with the most.  You see, there are people that come along that are so mean, vile in their words and actions, which makes you think, can’t I just not love one person? We think, “I love everyone else. I show unconditional love, but this particular person is downright disrespectful.”

However, Jesus tells us to love everyone.  Anger, in this passage, refers to the bitterness that is shown toward someone.  This kind of anger is dangerous to society. It can cause emotional and mental stress, spiritual impairment, and even violence.  Anger gets in the way of loving our neighbors; therefore, we should avoid our angry thoughts and replace them with loving thoughts.

Clarence Jordan brings up a provocative point about this passage.  In his book, The Sermon on the Mount, he suggests, “If people convince themselves that the lives of others aren’t worth much, the inference is drawn that it does not matter particularly what happens to them.  They may be shot, they may be exploited or bombed, or they may be used as cannon fodder, and it’s perfectly all right.  Nations do it, of course, on the wholesale and not just one at a time. Thus, contempt, leads to a justification of murder and this makes one a murderer at heart.”  As Jordan proposes, when the value of a person is lost, ‘murder’ has essentially begun. Jesus enlightens us to the fact that it is not just enough to avoid murder, we must also avoid anger and contempt towards others as well.

Jesus also warns us that our attitude towards others reflects our relationship with God. If we love others, we love God.  If we hate others that means we probably show hatred towards God.  Broken relationships impede our relationship with God. That is why reconciling relationships is so crucial. By settling disputes in relationships, you become closer to God.

To deepen your spiritual life, start by reconciling unstable relationships instead of hiding from the problem.  Then, consciously rid your mind of angry thoughts.  Have you ever heard of the saying, “Kill people with kindness?”  Instead of ‘killing’ them, because we are pacifists, I would recommend that we start practicing kindness towards everyone, every single day. So go out into the world, and be a blessing of compassion to all of humanity.


Jenna Walmer - Palmyra COB, Altantic Northeast DistrictJenna Walmer is from Lancaster County and is currently in 12th grade. In school, she loves to research historical events. If she were to live in a specific time period, she would want to be a hippie and live in the 60s or 70s. Her favorite past times are swimming and playing her trombone. If you want to know more about her random life, follow her on twitter: @jaymarie2100

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It is Time For Love in Action

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.


Jenna Walmer - Palmyra COB, Altantic Northeast District

Jenna is from Lancaster County and is currently in 12th grade. In school, she loves to research historical events. If she were to live in a specific time period, she would want to be a hippie and live in the 60s or 70s. Her favorite past times are swimming and playing her trombone. If you want to know more about her random life, follow her on twitter: @jaymarie2100
 

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