Is Your First Instinct to Love or Hate
by Joanne Troppello
Love is one of the greatest gifts we can give someone. The Bible teaches in I Cor. 13:13 that “Now abide faith, hope, love, these; but the greatest of these is love.” Before you stop reading, thinking I’m going to start preaching at you—I’m not. We reserve those devotionals for Sundays. 😉 I hope you continue reading because this is an important message; especially with the current negative times we live in.
When was the last time you were friendly to your neighbor or held the door open for someone behind you when walking into the grocery store? I’m calling myself out too with these questions. There is so much division in our country today. We can do our part to make a difference.
Don’t downplay your influence in the world. Every action can have a powerful effect that you may never even realize. Be a positive, not negative influence. This is one reason I registered the hashtag #CCOTOnFire on Twubs so people can share prayer requests, praise reports, and uplifting news with others who can pray with them and want to hear good news. Each new day is the perfect opportunity to be that positive force of showing love in the world—choosing kindness over disrespect or hate.
Obviously, you’re never going to please everyone or change hearts of unreasonable people who don’t want to listen to reason. However, keep hope alive and try to make a difference. If we all give up hope of ever making a difference in this world, where will that leave us—in a dark place where hatred is winning over love. We rise by lifting others up, not tearing them down.
You can accomplish even more than you think of when trying to change the world for the good. Sure, it is hard to make a difference, but it is worth it in the end. Please keep trying to show love and help others in need—even if all you can do is share a smile with them or lend a listening ear.
Take personal responsibility for your actions. Grow into an emotionally intelligent person who knows how to respond and not react. You’ll get further in life by being grateful rather than complaining. Always seek to find the good in life. Seek solutions, not all the reasons why you cannot love others.
Be a light in the world. We need more people to choose love over hate and kindness over disrespect. There will always be people with hard hearts and those who choose a darker path, but every choice for good you make can bring more light to our hurting world. Of course, being on social media can test your patience. We all enjoy positive interactions with others—even those we disagree with—but sometimes we need to choose our battles. I choose not to engage with unreasonable people.
It takes a big-minded person to be open to new ideas. A small-minded person is too focused on the impossibilities. Be open to always learning. Try to understand new ideas, even if you can’t agree with them. That’s how we bridge the gap back to civility. If we stop talking “at” and “about” people, but start talking “to” them, we can improve our chances of finding our way back to civility.
Remember that a little kindness can go a long way.
You may not feel like it, but you are valuable. Maybe you don’t feel loved. Know this—God loves you. He sent His Son to die on a cross for you. Even if you were the only person on earth, Jesus still would have died for you. Trust me, you are dearly loved. And sorry, I went back to preaching mode for the conclusion here. 😉
A Word from Joanne
Is your first instinct to love or hate? Check out this video vlog to hear why I think love is the greatest gift you can give to others. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. – I Cor. 13:13
About the Vlogger
Joanne Troppello is a published author of 3 inspirational fiction novels and the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Pandora's Box Gazette.
She has experience as a freelance writer in topics such as marketing, retail marketing, health and wellness, internet and media, travel and lifestyle, website content, app recommendations, and content for blogs.