Climb Higher: Conquering Hate
Read 1 John 3:11-15
For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.We should not be like Cain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother's righteous. Do not be surprised, brothers,[c]that the world hates you.We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
Consider this: God populated the world with thousands of ethnic groups. According to the U.S. Center for World Missions in Pasadena, Calif., there are five major, seven colors, 432 major peoples, 9,000 distinct ethnic groups and more than 6,170 languages. Incredible, isn't it? What's even more awesome is that God knows every man, woman and child personally.
The saying "God didn't make junk" is absolutely true. We are all equal and very special in His eyes: "God does not show favoritism" (Romans 2:11). God wants us to love one another unconditionally and to live in peace: "Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love" (Ephesians 5:1-2). Above all, He wants you and me to be "barrier busters." The word barrier in this case refers to "walls of hate," and there are basically only two ways you can break down these kinds of walls. (Three if your name is Joshua and you know seven priests who play trumpets of ram's horns, but this can get complicated [See Joshua 6:4,5].)
One way is to pound into it with a wrecking ball. The other way is to remove one brick at a time. For Christians, the second way is best. Those of us who worship a God of justice and love should be angry about racism--and, therefore, should strive to break down barriers of hate between the races. How? By developing relationships with people who are different from you. Get to know them as friends, do things together. Little by little, through your example, people will begin to notice that the barrier isn't as high as they once thought it was. They will actually begin to realize that they don't need to be trapped on either side of it.
Lord, please remove hate from my heart. Show me how to break down barriers of hate. Amen.