“They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” – Acts 2:46b-47 NIV
In my third year at varsity we went to a Christian camp in Zimbabwe. We were seven in number and we shared everything we had amongst ourselves and no one lacked anything. One person would open a drink, took a sip and passed it along (there was no Covid then) and you probably wouldn’t see that drink again. Whenever anyone ate or drank anything we all had an equal share. Though it was a very long drive none of us felt it. Looking back I don’t remember the drive itself but the fellowship and unity we had. To this day whenever we meet we also reminisce about that trip. I had never ever as a Christian felt like that before and I have never experienced fellowship like that again. Even the guys in Zimbabwe thought we were related because of our interactions and our bond. People even started using our slang. We were the popular group at that camp.
We currently live in a society where everyone is looking out for themselves. Everyone is hustling and grinding to establish themselves. Genuine and authentic love for others is rare. When people see it they can’t help but be drawn to it. It’s strange and everyone wants to be part of it. In the above scripture you can see that the numbers that were added to the church was as a result of the unity and not because of signs and wonders. Even then people were drawn to brotherly love and not works. Unfortunately it’s not something you can fake. It’s the works and not the talk that reflects this love. We can evangelize all we want but if there is no love we are just wasting our time.
Same way when a visitor comes into a church they are not interested in what you say but what you do. Whenever I visited a church I would always marvel at the fakeness of the ushers. I could tell those who didn’t like each other from their facial expressions. They tried to fake smiles but you didn’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to solve the mystery. They smile when seating a visitor and immediately continue their dislike of another usher (I’m odd because I notice such things).
Christ left us a simple instruction that we are still failing to execute, “love your neighbour as you love yourself”. We are still struggling to genuinely love our brothers and sisters in the faith so we clearly can’t love our neighbours (charity begins at home). Even Apostle Peter was begging the church to love one another , because it first starts with us (1 Peter 4:8). “Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs”(Proverbs 10:12). If we truly had deep genuine love for each other we wouldn’t have animosity towards one another because our love would cover everything. It’s a simple word and instruction yet we are still struggling with it to this day. The world is in need of love and the people who are meant to display that love are struggling themselves to express it to each other. It’s like patients looking to be cured of an illness yet the doctors and nurses themselves are sick. Like the above scripture the Lord wants to add daily to our numbers those who are being saved and we unfortunately are the hindrance, the road block to the flow of GOD. Maybe we need Thuli to investigate where the leak occurred so that we can plug it and start to enjoy a constant flow of it.
Genuine and authentic love for others is rare. When people see it they can’t help but be drawn to it.