Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

How Much Do You Have to Hate Someone?

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This weekend we celebrated a family tradition we’ve prioritized for the past twenty years. It’s a huge gathering of Christians in Nashville’s Opryland Hotel called Lads to Leaders. Lads to Leaders is a wonderful tool used by families and congregations of God’s people to deepen commitment to God and sharpen skills of service. It’s a way to help cement goals of faith in our kids. It can never replace faith-filled families, but, for us, it was an invaluable resource. We worked on projects for Lads all throughout the year and then we made the trek to Nashville on Easter weekend each year for the encouragement of national enthusiasm about spiritual things. I’m convinced that this yearly work-a-thon contributed substantially to the service that, by His grace, is now a natural part of Caleb’s and Hannah’s adult lives

This year’s convention theme was “We’ll Work Till Jesus Comes.” I love the dissection of that phrase. We’ll means were unified at the job as His people. Work means that, while we recognize we cannot earn salvation, we also recognize we cannot have it without compliance with commands and effort on our parts. Till says we’re in it for the long haul. Jesus is the center of activity. Finally, comes is representative of the eternal goal of work in the kingdom. It’s the next miracle workers await.

I heard more than a dozen speeches about that phrase. One speaker quoted a well-known atheist, Jillette Penn, and the quote is haunting me a bit:

“If you really believe in God, how much do you have to hate someone to not to tell them about the love of God.  How much do you have to hate someone to not tell them that one day they will live in either heaven or hell.”
From the mouth of an unbeliever, the words are pretty potent–shaming and motivating this believer to strive harder, watch more soberly, reflect Him more glaringly and do what anyone who really believes the Book and loves others cannot be deterred from doing. I believe. I love. I will speak.

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