Updated: Feb 2
In the world today, we've seen the growth of hate and the disappearance of love.
Whether it's brother against sister, young against old, religious against secular, capitalist against socialist, or any other juxtaposition of ideologies we can't ignore the fact that hate has permeated into every aspect of our lives. We are not filled with hate (at least most of us aren't!) but we do live in a society that sees hate every day and lives with it normalized in everything we do.
As Christians, we are called to love and to be kind and tenderhearted to one another (Ephesians 4:32). But what do we do when our love seems ineffective against such a giant wave of hate?
Christ gives us the confidence to overcome all evil and hate and we can march on against this wave!
But let's be honest, we aren't perfect and sometimes the hate mentally disarms us.
Anxiety, disappointment, anger, injustice, and so many other factors can make us feel like we aren't making a difference.
Pair that up with the extremely divided world we live in and you have the perfect soil for cultivating hate.
We can also add the fact that we have fighting within Christian organizations that creates conflict and animosity amongst folks who are literally supposed to be brothers and sisters in Christ.
But why so much hate?
We can't deny that hate makes money now-a-days.
When we watch the news we see hate 24/7 being thrown at us.
The same can be said about comedy shows, talk shows, and basically anything put out by large media companies.
Highlighting the negatives in our society can be necessary for helping us stay safe in difficult situations but most programs tend to overindulge on the negativity and ridicule because it tends to get more attention.
We also see a much greater focus being put on politics and activism which ultimately creates an "us against them" mentality.
Don't get me wrong! You can be passionate about your beliefs and ideologies (We are called to follow Him passionately in Matthew 10:38), but we should never hate and ridicule those who don't agree with us.
Associating someone with only one aspect of their lives can be dangerous and impractical.
For example, you might disagree with my Christian beliefs but you might love my passion for guitar and everything that comes with it.
Have you ever agreed with anyones opinions and beliefs 100%?
We should be exalting and celebrating our differences! Our uniqueness makes us special, and our disagreements should be discussed and peacefully resolved because at the end of the day we are all brothers and sisters.
So far I've only listed the reasons why hate is so prevalent in our society today and I have ignored the question asked in the title of this post.
So I will ask again.
Where's the love?
We all know 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (Love is patient and kind....), it's a great reminder of how we should love but where is the love in our world today?
Love in the world today is misplaced.
Love is misplaced in money, addictions, fame, people, and other worldly items.
Again, don't get me wrong! You can love your career and your spouse and other innocent things but you can't place all of your love in these physical items.
1 John 2:15-17 says, "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever."
Misplaced love is temporary, it's wavering.
Yes, we should love the world as our Father does, but that means not with a temporary love but with a love like the love in Romans 5:8, "But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
Our world today isn't lacking in love but it is misplacing it's love in temporary items.
We are in a selfish world unable to love in a way that Jesus loved us.
True love without Jesus is impossible, in 1 John 4:19 John writes to believers, "We love because He first loved us".
Temporary love has no forgiveness and no closure.
Once temporary love passes, only hate is left.
But to love like Christ is to cultivate a mindset of growth and closure, "Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins." 1 Peter 4:8.
If you're reading this right now, and you feel cold hearted, you feel like you're relationships are covered with anger and hatred, you feel like you are misplacing your love, take some time and ask God to break your heart, ask God to break you and remold you like the clay in Jeremiah 18:1-6 which has no choice but to trust the Potter. Ask God to guide your misplaced love back to the right path.
The worlds love is misplaced and misguided and it is the churches job to guide the lost back to His everlasting love.
Fight hate with love, weed out the hate and plant love, be patient when hate is thrown at you and share the love, forgive even when it's almost impossible to forgive, stop the bickering and disagreement and work on a united front.
Only the light that comes from love can put out the destructive darkness that spreads in our world today through hate.