Love one another with brotherly affection. Romans 12:10
It is easy to talk about love in general, but the real challenge is to love the people God places around you—the people in your home, your church, your work, and your neighborhood.
Christ calls us to love all people, even our enemies, but loving your enemies is hard. So here’s where we begin. God calls us to cultivate genuine love within his family.
Learn to love well by loving your own brothers and sisters in Christ. And when the days get darker, God says, “Do not be overcome by evil, overcome evil with good! And here is how you do that… You begin with love, and it must be genuine.”
To see how the early Christians did this, look at this excerpt from a letter written by a Roman soldier (who was away from home) to his wife, who was carrying their child. It shows an extraordinary contrast between the man’s obvious love for his wife (and potential son), and his complete callousness toward the possible birth of a daughter.
“I am still in Alexandria. I beg you to take good care of our baby son, and as soon as I receive payment I shall send it up to you. If you deliver a child [before I come home], and it is a girl, discard it. You have sent word ‘Don’t forget me.’ How can I forget you? I beg you not to worry.”
So it was not unusual for babies, and especially baby girls, to be left in the streets. When that happened Christians took them in, loved them as their own, and raised them.
Look around you—your home, church, workplace, and neighborhood—how can you love the people that God has placed around you?