Last week I ended my post by encouraging us to quit debating policy and instead love those around us – this is how we will create racial unity. But recall that we are to love as Jesus loved us, which is different than how our culture tells us to love. This love is costly, it requires sacrifice.
We see this in the way that Jesus loved us incarnationally, a biblical word to describe how Jesus left heaven to become human. Jesus pursued us. Jesus went out of His way to love us.
Love is not simply being kind to the people we interact with while we pursue our ambitions. To love someone means sacrificing our desires and ambitions for their good. Are we willing to do that? Are we willing to sacrifice our careers, our vacations, our free time, our money, and our comforts to love someone else?
Since I am writing this in response to the racial unrest in our country (though this principle applies to many issues), I’m going to create an abstract goal for this issue. Let’s say we want to create a world where the poverty rate for Black Americans isn’t more than double that for White Americans and where Black Americans don’t makeup 33% of the prison population despite only making up 12% of the population.
Even as I write this out, I can feel you thinking about the policies that have created this problem. Resist this. Instead, think about God’s solution to love one another.
Do we care enough about this goal – or any other issue of injustice – to pay the cost and obey Jesus’ commandment? Or is our goal something we’d like to see in an ideal world, but in reality, we are too interested in traveling the world or advancing our career to make the sacrifices necessary?
God’s commandment may be simple, but it isn’t easy. So how can we live this selflessly? The answer, we look to the love Jesus showed us. Jesus died on the cross and endured the wrath of God that we deserved. That love is the only power strong enough to free us from our self-destructing behavior. As we are changed by the love God showed to free us, we then are empowered to love others and fight against evil and injustice in this world.