Step Into the World: Love in Action

As we enter February, our thoughts move from the Christmas season to the celebration of Valentine’s Day. During this month, we spend time thinking of ways to demonstrate our love for friends and family. It is a season filled with beautiful opportunities to step into the world around us to share God’s love with others.

Dictionary.com says that the phrase step into means to “Involve oneself or intervene” in a situation. So, saying that we will step into the world to show Christ’s love infers much more than simply saying “I love you.” Stepping into the world means that we put our love into action.

John, the beloved disciple, said, “Dear Children, let us not love with words or speech, but with actions and in truth” (1 John 3:18 NIV1).

Step into the world. Develop a Christ-centeredness that flows into an others-centeredness. Let’s place our selfish concerns, including our fears, behind us and step out in courage and boldness. Instead of thinking of stepping into the world as a duty, begin to look at it as a privilege.

Think of people in your church and community who need an extra measure of hope and love. Whom do you know that needs respite care? A single mother? The family of a child with special needs? A caregiver for an elderly parent? What about someone who could just use an extra touch of love? Perhaps it is the widow down the street or the mother who lost her child. Or, maybe it is the young couple who’ve moved into your neighborhood and are far from their families. Maybe it is the person experiencing the tension of re-entering the community after being in rehab.

When you’ve thought of several who need that extra measure of hope and love, develop a plan for being a channel of God’s love and grace. As you move forward, you can expect that the world is going to throw some discouragement and fear your way. You may hear some phrases that sound like this: “You don’t have time for that.” “Where will you get the money to help her?” “You don’t know what you are getting yourself into.” “He is a hopeless cause.” When you experience such, keep looking ahead and move forward with great determination knowing that God is faithful to give you grace and mercy and strength to accomplish the task He has set before you.

Pray: Father, please let me see my community through Your eyes. Help me to know where You need me to step out into my world to bring Your hope and love and grace. Strengthen me to accomplish the task You’ve given me and help me to move forward despite the obstacles of discouragement and fear that may come my way. Help me to move forward with courage and boldness. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Amen.

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