Thursday, November 25, 2010

Proverbs 10:12

I am sitting here in Mumbai, India, at Gloria Jean's coffee shop and
am having a moment of peace and solitude from a crazy city outside of
these walls. I am reading my bible and these words are hitting me deep
in my heart.

"Hatred stirs up dissension,
but love covers over all wrongs."

Dissension. I don't even really know the full extent of what that word
means, but I know that it is not pleasant. In my heart I know that
hatred is simply a lack of love - it is not the intense word that we
use in todays society, and I really believe that everything that lacks
love is hate. I know that there are some people that I am finding hard
to love at the moment, does that mean hatred? I know I would never say
that, but is that how God sees it? Is that how He views my heart when
it comes to people that I'm finding difficult to love? I really hope
not, but I'm pleased that the next part of the verse says what it

Love covers over all wrongs. Wow. My wrongs, your wrongs and everyones
wrongs. Love, His love, and our love for each other. It covers all
wrongs...not some, but ALL. That's crazy and unimaginable as I sit
here and think of all the wrongs that go on inside me on a daily
basis, all wrongs that other people do to me and I do to them, all
wrongs that are done in this city that I am experiencing. All wrongs,
all wrongs, all wrongs.

It doesn't say that love will fix all wrongs...but covers. I think
that is incredible and so against the culture that we live in. We live
in a fixing culture, where everything needs to be perfect and
wonderful and if it is not, then we need to change something about our
lives, or circumstances, or get new friends, or shelter our existence
instead of really battling through it.
Love covers...I imagine the Lord spreading out a blanket over my life,
my wrongs, my thoughts, my feelings, my hurts, my troubles, wrongs
done against me. He doesn't fix it, doesn't make them go away, I still
have consequences of my thoughts and actions but He covers, He covers
it with His love, grace and mercy.

I imagine a blanket being tenderly pulled over this city and all the
tragic wrongs that are done here in peoples lives and to the people.
Some have no control over it, some are beaten, killed and controlled
by terrible people wanting to make money or because of power. Some
young girls and children are trafficked and broken and made to service
disgusting men for their pleasure. Some people and families are forced
on the street because of unfair treatment in their workplaces. Some
come to find a better life, expecting promises to be filled, only to
be shown the true reality of what it means to live here and what was
'the city of dreams' soon becomes that of nightmares as they find
themselves wrapped up in evil. Some have known nothing else than to be
living on the kerb eating gutter food. Through it all, I see Jesus and
His mercy and kindness and He is kissing this city, He is covering it
with His enduring love.

Somehow, love covers this city and people will know Love. Love is
covering, but now needs to be poured out. He needs His church, His
people to rise up and to be His hands and feet and to show 'kindness
and mercy' to those who are so desperately in need of it.

People might not want it. People might not appreciate or value it the
same way in which we do. But nevertheless, it is a command. To love
our neighbour is not a small, medial task, but a mighty one and one
that Jesus and His apostles so wonderfully modelled to us. They went
to the dirty, unclean, seemingly un loveable people as well as their
friends, family and people who were similar to them. To love our
neighbour is not to just love the person that is easy for us to love,
it is to love all people. That is huge for me and I know I can't do it
without His empowering grace. In my humanity I will struggle, but in
His bounty of grace and love I know that it is possible.

It has to be possible, otherwise He would not have commanded it.

So, imagine today, God spreading His cover of love over all the wrongs
that you have experienced in life, that others have experienced, that
your city is experiencing and that this world is experiencing. See him
gently spreading the cover over us and thank Him, love Him and love
your neighbour.

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