The Shepherd of Hope blog is here to serve you, to help you know Jesus better and to find hope in Him. This blog relies on the Spirit of God using the word of God to build people of God. All material has been prayerfully submitted for your encouragement and spiritual edification. Your questions and comments are welcome.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Love in Action

Abortion is a real hot button issue. Given the advances in sonogram technology it’s clear and undeniable that the womb contains a real living person; a baby. Those who believe the Bible to be God’s truth and revelation knew that already (e.g. Psalm 139:13-16). Science is also on the side of those who speak against abortion death and for birthing these children to life. But for the church or Christians or anyone to speak out against abortion while offering no practical help to the pregnant mothers in question is at best Laodicean lukewarmness and at worst a misrepresentation of Christian love.

To speak against abortion and not provide a viable alternative is a hollow gong. Love, true Christlike love, not only speaks truth in love (Eph. 4:15), but takes action to sustain and support truth in life. The apostle John wrote: “By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” (1 John 3:16-18). It’s interesting that John uses the endearing reference to “My little children.” Perhaps the recipients of John’s letter were childlike spiritually, immature in their faith and talking a good talk of love but not walking a walk of love.

The spiritually mature know that love is an action. Love acts. God’s brand of love is sacrificial; it lays down its life for others. It not only speaks out against or about injustices, it does something to alleviate them. As John points out, it’s about the condition of your heart. If you shut your heart to those in need around you, “how does the love of God abide” in you? A shut heart is a loveless heart. And that is a big problem. Why? Because the prime sign of a person genuinely saved and born of the Spirit is love.

A person must be born of the Spirit. Jesus said that just as we are born physically, we must be born spiritually (John 3). Spiritual life comes from God’s regenerative work in us. When a person acknowledges their sin, turns from it to God and by faith asks God to forgive their sins based on the cross work of Christ, that person will be forgiven by God. And once forgiven the Holy Spirit indwells the believer giving them spiritual life (Rom. 8:9-11; 1 Cor. 3:16).

How do we know if we are born of the Spirit? We know by the witness of the Spirit in our hearts (1 John 3:24). These is a tangible change in our lives (2 Cor. 5:17). The person born of the Spirit is a new creation with a new way of life (Rom. 6:4). And the evidence of that new life is God’s love. God pours His love into the heart of the person who has been born again (Rom. 5:5). God’s love is a sacrificial active love (e.g. Rom. 5:8).

Love is an action. And all that we do needs to be done in the love of God if it is to be worth anything (1 Cor. 13:1-7). That done without love will fail. That which is done in love “never fails” (1 Cor. 13:8). If we are to experience victory in this battle against abortion, we will have to take loving action. And here is where I want to provide you with an opportunity to act in love right here in our own Long Island community. I’m speaking of The Care Center.

The Care Center provides a viable Spirit led link between truth spoken in love and that love in practical action. This ministry provides counseling on sexual health, abortion education, pregnancy, abortion recovery, parenting skills and referrals. They provide free pregnancy tests, diapers and other supplies and services to those who are pregnant and in need. And all of this is provided from a Christ-centered world view. This is a ministry Christians should get behind and support. Pastors can preach about the evils and tragedy of abortion from the pulpit, but unless they are encouraging a real alternative with real help, it is an impotent message. No, we need to speak the truth about abortion in love and provide a loving Christlike alternative to those who are pregnant. If you would like to learn more about The Care Center, volunteer, offer financial support, or just learn more about this ministry the contact information is as follows:

The Care Center
Doreen Gelesko, Executive Director,
1930 Vets Memorial Highway
Suite 15
Islandia NY 11749

Pray about this. Pray for the Care Center. What would the Lord have you do in order to not only speak about love but act in love? I think God’s answer to that prayer just may be found in The Care Center. God bless you all.

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