The Opposite of Love
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
When dealing with a married couple who are angry and arguing—at wit’s end with each other—I see hope…
When dealing with a couple who just don’t care any longer, who have moved to the place of not feeling anymore… of not giving a darn, I grieve…
You see, the opposite of LOVE is not ANGER; rather, it is APATHY!
Real love gives. Real love cares. Real love is expressed in joy AND in anger. Real love is passionate and feels passionately about other—even to the place of loud exchanges and uncomfortable confrontations.
The one thing Real Love does not do is… Give up. Walk away. Check out.
In this, The Year of Love, we should joyfully consider the fact that God loves so much as to give Himself…
Jesus’ Love was expressed in tears, in teaching, in correcting, in challenging, in anger, in exasperation, in healing, in deliverance, in loud voices, in quiet prayers, in gentle nudges and in powerful pushes… But NEVER in Apathy!!!
God cares. God cares enough to Judge. To turn over tables. To call religious folks to task and apathetic folks back to real love…
Our American Church culture is sick with a cheap apathetic “love” that calls people to nothing and cares about their eternity even less. Confronting sin is now considered the worst of sins. Preaching on sin or the coming judgement or Godly wrath has been replaced by a syrupy “love” that drips with apathy rather than the righteous, passionate, sometimes-angry-but-always-caring Love that drove Father to send His Son…!
When I think about the Methodist Church… Once so passionately in love with Jesus and His people as to call them to holiness… Once mocked for loving God with all-consuming passion… Once driven to anger over the abuse of women and children… Once courageous enough to war against slavery and alcoholism…
Now, much of Methodism—and much of the American Church—has been reduced to preaching “love” that costs nothing and changes even less… Afraid to get angry over anything—except the preaching of the truth.
The opposite of love is apathy, not anger.
Love, sometimes, is best expressed in anger—a righteous anger than can no longer tolerate the devastation of a sinful behavior… a gentle anger that clears the air and calls for deeper relationship… a fiery anger that confronts religiosity and hypocrisy with the truth of the Word.
Love encompasses anger and can even make it righteous, but apathy leads only to death.
Jesus LOVES me, this I know…!