How They’ll Know Us

How do the people outside the church know who the people inside the church are? Can they tell that there is a difference? When the church gathers, is it much like a Rotary meeting?

I’ve been reading in John’s Gospel for some time recently. There is a part toward the end where Jesus is instructing his followers on life after he’s gone. And he looks around at his ill-assorted group of followers, and he tells them, “This is how they’ll know you, by how you love one another.”

The church as described in Acts 2–long before it got so over-organized–grew rapidly because the people lived differently than people in the area. And that difference was good. And that difference is contagious.

And that difference has all-to-often gone away.

On bad days, one wonders if the whole life-style of love among Jesus-followers has evaporated completely.

The practice of Spiritual Disciplines is not an end in itself. The practice should lead us toward an attitude of love towards others. Love in such a way that others are attracted to this man called Jesus. Love such that others want to join together to celebrate and worship and participate in acts of service.

We can read the history of the church and see the immense divisiveness leading to bloodshed during the past 2,000 years. But we can also see those acts of love that kept the fire burning.

If we sense divisiveness in our groups, it’s time to practice loving others. They will know us by our love.

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