September 24, 2023 | Doug Sauder
Watch our most recent mid-week message here.
We're so glad you're taking a next step to get connected! Login or create your Calvary account below.
Don’t have an account? Sign up ›
“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”—1 John 3:18 (NIV)
For the past three years of my life in college, I’ve learned a lot about loving in action and in truth through my living situations. I still remember the first time I had to move someone’s laundry from the dryer because they still had not picked it up after a few hours. I started to fold it all when she came in and quickly exclaimed, “Girl! You don’t have to fold my clothes! You’re too nice! Thank you so much, wow!” I was so surprised at her reaction, but I didn’t realize why she was so surprised until a neighbor of mine did the same for my clothes! This simple act of folding someone’s laundry is a display of Christ’s simple and sweet love in action.
Apart from this example of loving in simple action, I’ve also experienced being loved in truth through the past three years of my college life. In my freshman year, I vividly remember the first time my roommate called me out in a particular area of weakness I didn’t recognize I had. She was studying about different personalities in her psychology class, and she called me out on my tendency to live for a manufactured audience in my mind. I felt so embarrassed and my initial reaction was to fight back and prove that she was wrong, but I quickly realized she was right.
One of my biggest struggles has always been fear of man. I had become aware of that in high school, but having it called out again was not fun. Nonetheless, I really value this moment looking back because I felt seen in knowing that my friend loved me enough to tell me that and knowing that weakness of mine did not drive her away from me. Because she loved me in truth, I was able to recognize I needed to realign my heart with God’s and that other people can love me, flaws and all! This wouldn’t have happened if she didn’t have the courage and boldness to love me in truth!
I hope these examples provide you with some ideas of what loving others in action and truth could look like. When reading through the whole Book of 1 John, it’s easy to see that John was concerned with combating false teaching, establishing evidence and fruit for true belief, and walking in the righteousness that comes from being forgiven in Christ. For this reason, he talks a lot about living in God’s love.
Love is more than just a feeling we idealize and romanticize in society. Love is who our God is. Love is a verb and necessitates action. Love is an expression of honor and value. Love is the result of truly attributing worth to someone. This is why perfect love can only be found in our Creator, and this is also why the Holy Spirit is the one to produce such love in us.
Though we will never be perfect, we have received God’s perfect love, and through the work of the Holy Spirit, we can help share and impart that love to others. For this to happen though, we must not be afraid to love in our actions and in truth. Today, I pray the Spirit would help us walk in this kind of sacrificial and bold love.
Pause: When has someone loved you in action or in truth?
Practice: Think about three ways you can love someone in action or in truth today and commit to doing those three things!
Pray: God, thank You for being love! You are perfect and Your love is incomprehensible yet tangible and personal. I praise You for that today! I ask that You humble me so I will love others with Your love. I want to love in action and truth despite the difficulties of doing that. Help me to be sacrificial in the way I love those around me today and every day. Amen.
Samy Rodriguez has been serving with the Calvary writing team since 2020 as a senior at Calvary Christian Academy. Before going to study communications, biblical studies, and intercultural studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University, she interned with the Calvary Communications Team and was a student leader in HSM (High School Ministry). She is passionate about communicating God’s Word and looks forward to continuing to serve in ministry after college.