There was a couple who sadly had no children but they, and the husband in particular, always claimed that they loved children. Their garden bordered on to a golf course and one summer’s day the husband was laying a concrete path to a gate that led onto the course. He had one of those machines that squirt the concrete into the right place and then spent a long time smoothing it out until it shone like glass. He stood back to admire his handiwork when suddenly the next door neighbour’s little boy came through the gate and ran along the newly laid path. The man shouted out in anger and the boy stopped and turned around in the wet concrete and ran back to the gate to escape. The man’s anger was obvious and his work ruined, at least in the short term. His wife heard him through the open window and said sweetly, “I thought you said you liked children”. He replied, “I love them in the abstract but not in the concrete!”.
That was literally in the concrete but how many speak of loving others but it is nothing more than theoretical. They have no desire to sacrifice for the good of others or inconvenience themselves that others, less fortunate, might benefit. As long as the needy are far away a little money can be given to salve the conscience but there is no need to get hands dirty or have life disrupted in any way. We look on in amazement at those who sit with the homeless on the streets, who run the soup kitchen and reach out to the destitute, the poor, the wretched and the demoralised.
Christ came to earth from the splendour of Heaven. He not only talked about loving us but proved it by humbling Himself and dying the horrendous death on the cross as a sacrifice for our sins. He opened a door and says that all who trust in Him can have their sins forgiven and go one day to the splendour of Heaven, but all who are his true followers mush reflect His character of sacrificial service to others and especially toward those who are in need. We must not simply show love in the abstract but also in the concrete.
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