It is very easy to love some people! I am sure that statement has bought to mind a whole host of people you love…. But some people are slightly more challenging.
Through the work and ministry of Street Angels we are out and about on the streets of communities late at night (and into the early hour of the morning). We help anyone – young ladies who’s poor choice of footwear mens the require plaster, anti-sceptic gel and flip-flops; those who are lost and wanting directions; those who have become separated from friends or partner; those who are homeless; those coming down from a high and needing a top up of caffeine and sugar.
Some of these people we help are easy to love – they hug you (mind you drunken hugs are not always appreciated), high-five you, thank you time and time again and then take the trouble to tweet and email thanks the following day. Some not so – the young lad who is very demanding, very twitchy, yelling, swearing and with a carrier bag with needles poking out is one memory of someone I found difficult to love.
Yet Jesus says love everyone! Love them as yourself! Love even your enemies! Love them if they think and behave differently to you. Love them if they are aggressive towards you. Love them whatever!
As people aiming to follow Jesus we have a massive advantage when it comes to love. It is part of our DNA. It is fantastic that time and again the church is the main agency that is there, loving, in almost every area that seeks to dehumanise people. Debt, addiction, nights out gone wrong, loneliness, dementia – the list goes on!
This Advent, Christmas and into 2017 can I encourage you to start and do something very simple – #Do1NiceThing – each and every day commit to doing one nice thing, an act of love, for someone else. On our website – www.do1nicething.org.uk – we have a whole list of ideas. Simple things that could well make the world of difference for others.
Love, love, love – all we need is love! Maybe the Beatles were onto something after all!!!!
Paul Blakey MBE – founder Street Angels, CNI Network and Love Your Streets