Unfortunately, I am also missing the wires for easily loving others. Verse 2, however, brings this also into alignment with obedience. While the warm-fuzzies are quite rare toward those I get to know they are beside the point. The bedrock of love is not my feeling, but my being. When I set my heart to do good unto others as a prime-feature of God’s desire for me, then I am really loving them.
Often, the annoyance at others is like a Don Quixote windmill. The vanes of the windmill spin fastest when I am off by myself. When we get together, and their needs and my abilities are all out in the open I generally, not always, but generally am able to do unto them as God would have.
In The Heart of the Matter, Graham Greene tells of an unlikely friendship between a diamond smuggler and police chief Scobie. At one point the smuggler says, “Your words are harder than your heart, Major Scobie.” Aha! That phrase hit me where I live. I run around with all of these unkind notions, but when the rubber meets the road, it is less about my notions and more about my actions. See Major Scobie would not make up evidence against the drug smuggler. He might be culturally and professionally convinced of the other’s illicit behaviors, but when it came down to a trial, the evidence was all important.
When it comes down to our outlook upon others, we bring our life-baggage as a carry-on.
When it comes down to our outlook upon others, we bring our life-baggage as a carry-on. It does not go in the hold someplace but sits beside us (inside us really) blaring its opinions through our thoughts. We know we love the children of God when we carry out his commands. When he says, “love others” he means: do for them what they need. What things have you done against your happiness for the good of your family? For members of your work community? If these responses and doings to unto others are outgrowths of your allegiance to God, then John says, you are doing well. Then, you are loving them.