Last weekend, my family and I finally got to check out a dim sum restaurant in Chinatown that had been closed for nearly the entire pandemic. Of course, we weren’t the only ones hoping for a taste of their well-known dumplings that day, so we made friends with the like-minded foodies waiting in line and traded ideas of which items we’d be checking off on the menu (unfortunately many dim sum restaurants still don’t get to push carts; thanks, COVID).
One of our new friends told us that she heard good things about the pork buns. She also said that if it wasn’t true, she’d be quick to jump on Yelp to write an awful review. Her husband joked back, “That’s the only time we write reviews.”
The statement struck me. How true is that for most people? Why is it easier to take time to write a negative review than to write a positive one? Why is it so much easier to deliver criticism than it is to deliver praise?
Because we are sinners.
- See the speck of wood in our brother’s eye rather than the plank in our own (Matthew 7:5).
- Don’t keep a tight rein on our tongues (James 1:26).
- Need the Holy Spirit (John 14:26).
Focus with me on the third bullet: we need the Holy Spirit. We need Him. We need Him. There’s no correcting the first two bullets without Him. We’re much too weak to do that ourselves. And just being a “good person” isn’t powerful enough a motivation to make such changes.
So what is? Loving God. If we loved Him with all our heart, and all our soul, and all our mind (Mark 12:30), we’d reflect Him. We’d see our brothers and sisters as He does. We’d love one another as He does. You see, we reflect what we worship.
Loving the Father is abiding in Him. Abiding in Him, is loving the Father.
I work for a ministry called Revelation Wellness, and one of our favorite sayings is “Jesus loves the hell out of you.”
His love is so wide, long, high, and so deep (Ephesians 3:18) that He died and rose for you so you could spend eternity with Him. He did this for all of us. And we can extend that invitation by:
- Texting a prayer to a loved one.
- Helping a neighbor.
- Supporting a friend’s new venture.
- Encouraging a colleague.
- Leaving a thoughtful note on someone’s social media post.
- Thanking the server, the cashier, the mailman.
- Writing a positive review.
Let’s be people above reproach. Let’s be Christians who don’t just know the Word but apply it too. Let’s love the Father by abiding in Him and His precepts. Let’s be the people who are generous with five stars.
“May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees.
May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous.
May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts.” Psalm 119:171-173