Sincere Love

Love must be sincere. Romans 12:9 (NIV)

I was in a desperate situation. I was out of work, and I had to find a way to meet my family’s needs. One evening I ran into an old friend. I knew he was well connected in my field, so I put my best foot forward and began a conversation with him.

After explaining my situation, my friend said he’d be glad to help. He said to call him the next morning so we could talk about some possibilities.

The next day, I made the call but he didn’t answer. I called him several times over the next few days, but I never reached him. In fact, he never returned any of my messages, and I never heard from him again!

Platitudes are one of my pet peeves. When people say, “Hey, let’s do lunch!” or “I’ll call you next week,” they rarely mean it. Maybe you’ve been guilty of saying something you don’t really mean. When you hear a platitude—or say one—you know there’s no meaning behind the words. It’s just not sincere.

We know this is no way to express real love for others, yet it has become a common part of our everyday experience. I’m challenged by the writer of Romans, who said love must be sincere. That’s the point: Love isn’t really love unless it’s sincere. If love is a verb more than it’s a noun, then love must involve more actions than words. Now that’s not to say words have no place in love—they certainly do! But love, to be sincere, must involve more than words. Be challenged today to look for ways to express love in sincere and tangible ways.

Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other. And in fact, you do love all of God’s family throughout Macedonia. Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so more and more… 1 Thessalonians 4:9, 10 (NIV)

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