Maybe they had it right. Or at least a part of it. I am a product of the 80’s but I’ve always been intrigued by the the 60’s – more specifically, the hippie generation. It was a generation where the youth were seen as ‘corrupted by society’ and were influenced by sex, drugs, and rock & roll. Though the latter may be true, one thing that resounds from deep within this generation is the fact that they loved to love one another. As a result, during one of America’s most controversial international conflicts in Asia, there was a generation spending time loving one another. Now, I’m not necessarily condoning the hippie lifestyle, but through the ‘love everyone’ lifestyle, I think the hippies may have been on to something!
Open any page of the Bible and you would be hard-pressed not to find text pointing toward love. In fact, the word LOVE shows up nearly 550 times in the Bible. You see, the Bible IS a love story. Everything leads back to Jesus and the Cross, and the fact that Jesus died for us was the most sacrificial form of love possible. But the story goes much deeper.
The fundamental truth of Jesus’ teaching is found in Matthew 22:37-40:
“Jesus replied, ‘you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the profits are based on showing these two commandments.”
This law was extremely controversial in Jesus’ day because it rivaled Roman law, and in Jewish culture, the Ten Commandments were historically the supreme law. With this statement, Jesus lays the groundwork for the Christian faith. He makes our purpose in life spent on Earth remarkably clear. We are to Love God and Love People through action! 1 John 3:18 says “Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.” Sounds easy right?
Lets go back to the hippies. They made love a fundamental part of their lifestyle. They set aside responsibilities that society said were the priority and chose to live differently. As followers of Jesus, we have made a very similar decision. A life in pursuit of Christ suddenly places our retirement, 401K, and climbing the corporate ladder on the back-burner. Mother Teresa said “it’s not what you do, but how much love you put into it that matters.” Our priority changes to living a life of LOVE above our selfish temporary ambitions. So as the world continues to bombard us with distractions this holiday season, lets remember our fundamentals and simply LOVE!
Questions to Ponder:
- Who do you need to start spending more time with?
- What do you need to cut out of your schedule to make that possible?
- What sacrifices do you need to make?
- Who is that ONE person that you need to model the love of Jesus to today? Dig through your contacts, Facebook friends, twitter account and see where God leads you!