Loving others…

Teamwork – that’s what we claim sports is about. It’s not about winning or losing – “it’s how you play the game.”

I want you to think about our society for a moment. Do we play as a team? Do we use teamwork to advance our society? Sure, within our circles of influence and at work, we probably all have some common vision. Whether it’s to provide the best healthcare at a hospital, or to provide the lowest cost merchandise to the public at retail locations, we probably all have some common theme. However, outside of those walls, do we have the same enthusiasm? Do we try to help each other? Is there a sense of teamwork in our society?

Jesus told us that the greatest Commandment is to <span style=”color: #ff0000;”>love the Lord our God </span>(Matthew 22:37). And the second is like it – <span style=”color: #ff0000;”>love your neighbor as yourself</span> (Matthew 22:39). If we truly executed these two commandments, I would agree that we have team work. <span style=”text-decoration: underline;”>But do we?</span> Do we execute these Commandments? I think we all know the answer to that question. Even if we execute them just partially, are we accomplishing the task at hand?

Scripture says we are to accept one another (Romans 15:7), encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11), bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2), and to serve one another (Galatians 5:13). Do we do this? Are we truly loving our neighbor as ourself? Or are we selfish?

Above and beyond these tasks, God tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. One easy way to identify whether we’re doing this is found in Ephesians 4:32 – “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ, God forgave you.” You see, that’s what love is all about; God forgave us through Christ. <span style=”color: #ff0000;”>God loved us so much that He gave His one and only son for us, so that we would not have to perish, but have everlasting life</span> (John 3:16). His example of forgiveness, by giving His only son, is by far the most sincere debt of gratitude than anyone can express. So if you want to really know if you are loving your neighbor, look at the type of love God showed us. Does your love compare?

So next time you meet someone in the grocery store, hold the door for them, and give them encouragement. The next time you see somebody in your neighborhood that needs a hand, lend it to them. The next time you’re anywhere and see a person in any kind of situation that needs help, give of yourself and show God’s love through your willingness to help one another. When you find yourself on the playing field or basketball court, show compassion to your fellow sportsmen and show God’s love through the way you play the game.

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