Love calls us to say something, do something and be someone.

“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.” (Romans 12 v 9)

“Nineteen young children and two adults have died in a shooting at a primary school in south Texas.” That’s what we wake up to this morning.

We cannot be silent about that. We cannot be numbed into a shrug of the shoulders.

Can we?

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

The Syrian refugee crisis had been taking place for 4 years before the world was shocked on 2nd September 2015 by a little 2 year old boy, Alan Kurdi, whose lifeless body, still wearing his bright-red T-shirt and shorts, was carried and laid face down on the beach not far from Turkey’s wealthy town of Bodrum. The Twitter hashtag that went viral was ‘humanity washed ashore’.

Surely this stopped everything. We couldn’t just carry on with our lives could we?

The world’s largest displacement crisis is still Syria 11 years on from when it started. More than 13 million people have been displaced.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

If love is going to be sincere then we are going to have to respond.

We are not loving if we allow bullies to bully, killers to kill, rapists to rape, abusers to abuse.

We are not loving if we say nothing about the selfishness around us; the consumerism and greed in our society; the family breakdown in our neighbourhood; poverty, violence and racism; the list goes on; evil is here.

There is evil and there is good. It isn’t what we call it. It already exists. It was there before we were born and it will be there after we die. In order to demonstrate love then get involved with both. With the evil abhor it. Call it what it is. Take it on. Detest it enough to defeat it. With the good then cling to it. Paul uses the word in 1 Corinthians 6:16 for the uniting of 2 bodies into one. Be glued to the good. In all of the evils find the good.

The horror of December 2012 is etched in our minds when 26 school children were murdered at Sandy Hook. One 7 year old boy called Daniel, a victim of this evil, was unusually compassionate and always concerned for the special needs girl who he sat with in class making sure she was okay. When she would lose her glasses Daniel would find them. His parents clung to the good and launched a campaign called, ‘What would Daniel do?’ encouraging others to follow Daniel’s legacy of kindness.

Within the horrors of the Syrian camps is a father, Osama, who in being supported by the UNCHR is now able to support his family having been given 5 sheep. One of which gave birth so he has now six! “I’m happy because I can feed my family and sell the milk and cheese at the market,” he said, tenderly holding his young son.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

Today let us not sit back. But let us get involved and let our love be sincere.

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