Here a just a few highlights:
Romans 12:9 (NIV) "Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good."When we ask "how are you?", do we really care or are we fulfilling a social expectation?
Romans 12:9 (NLT) "Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.""We are all like the moon, we all have a dark side we don't want anyone to see."
Where does sincere love come from?
1 Timothy 1:5 (NLT)" The purpose of my instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith"Sincere love comes from a pure heart, clear conscience, and a genuine or sincere faith. How do we come into posession of a pure heart?
Acts 15:8 (NIV) "God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us."Only when we give our heart to God can He make it pure and put it back in us. But what is sincere love? What is our example to follow (here's a real kick in the pants!)
1 John 4:7-11 (NIV) 7Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.Read it again. God's love is how ought to love! Do we? Do we really? Not even a little. Jesus is our standard for how to love others and His love was always outwardly focused.
Matthew 22:37-40 (NIV) 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."No where in there does Jesus say, "but make sure you take some time to love yourself". He didn't need to, we've got that down pat! We can love ourselves like no other creature on this planet! No, Jesus says that love should be always pointed outward. First to God and then to others.
Outwardly focused love and outwardly focused manifestations of that love, without hypocrisy.
Think on it, it'll blow your mind!!