Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 15, 2014

Always look for opportunities to love

By Michael Carson
Local Columnist

---- — I watched The Beatles 50th Anniversary show last Sunday, and I even saw the “first run” on the "Ed Sullivan Show."

Come on, a lot of you did too.

My point of departure is this: “All you need is love, love. Love is all you need.” (The Beatles) This has become a great “turn of phrase.”

Another popular turn of phrase is “In a perfect world.” This phrase suggests that that this is not a perfect world. In this world there are issues, challenges, heart break and heart ache. We sometimes get hurt, and yes, sometimes we have hurt others. No matter if the hurt has been by omission or commission, by thought, word or deed, it has happened.

Jesus reminds us that we all will experience some not so happy situations. “In the world ye shall have tribulation.” (St. John 16:33) But wait Jesus goes on to reassure us: “but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (St. John 16:33)

What a great world it would be if relationships would never fail, families would never fight, jobs would always be plentiful and everyone would always want to work, and where bills would always be paid.

What about a world where friends were always faithful? What if our world was one where everyone always loved everyone else, and issues such as ageism, racism, classism, sexism, were not a reality.

How about a world where everyone was accepted and everyone would get along; no one would suffer; a world where there were no “big I’s and little you’s.” A world where everyone were valued, respected, and held in great worth. How about a world where there were no war; a world where there was no abuse, and where there were no “ills” of society? What a perfect world this would be!

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. named this world “The Beloved Community.” Yes alas this world is yet to come.

You may ask, “Brother Mike what should we do?”

The answer is to place your trust in God.

“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.” (Romans 5:1-6)

I have a suggestion: let’s always embrace “the gospel” of the late Luther Vandross: “Gotta stop to love.”

Yes our world is not perfect. But we can always strive to serve our perfect God! And yes “God is Love!” (1 John 4:8)

There is one last turn of phrase I will leave us with. “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.” When we stop to love others, others might stop to love us. In fact we are commanded to do this. (St. Matthew 22:36-40) Of course God always loves us unconditionally.

Peace with justice, be blessed real good, attend worship, and families matter.