“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” – 1 Peter 4:8.
How do you feel when somebody seems indifferent to you? Indifference suggests that he or she thinks you are boring, uninteresting, worthless or fill in the blank. Most people find indifference worse than being disliked. But what if we are a Christian? Can we be a follower of Jesus and be indifferent to others?
God has called us to purposeful living. And one of the threats to living a purpose driven life is indifference- to God and to others. Indifference is the absence of feeling or interest in someone or something. If we are indifferent to others, we will never involve ourselves in their lives, as Christ involved Himself in ours. Instead, we should be loving others.
Loving people is difficult. Yet this is what the Bible commands. “This is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another.” (1 John 3:11). We spend time on what we deem important. For many of us these choices are valid: time with family and friends, work, prayer, serving the poor, fighting for rights, protesting wrongs. But as the Scripture reminds us, “If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:3).
Jesus made a point about our priorities in Matthew: “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:37-39). Love, then, is not a gray area. Every thought, response, and act of goodwill must first pass through the fine filter of love. So how can we be indifferent and love at the same time? We can’t.
In “Strength to Love”, Martin Luther King, Jr., encouraged us to realize that “our responsibility as Christians is to discover the meaning of this command and seek passionately to live it out in our daily lives.”
So take an interest in others. Concern yourselves. Unintentional living leads to indifference. Live deliberately, not indifferently. Love God and love others.
- Is it easier to be indifferent to people than to God? Why or why not?
- What can we do this week to love people more effectively?