No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
Thus begins John Donne’s Poem entitled “No Man is an Island.” It is a reminder of how interconnected we are as human beings. God has not made us to go off and live in isolation. We are called to interact, to support, to love each other. Sin entered the picture and we have hatred, we have greed, we have oppression.
Paul reminded us of this truth in his letter to the Galatians. He wrote about the law of reaping and sowing and how it applies in life. He finished that section with this sentence: “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” (Galatians 6:10) The admonition is simple: we are to look for opportunities to love other people and do good to them – especially followers of Christ.
Instead it seems as if we are enmeshed in a dog eat dog, rise to the top by stabbing your co-worker in the back type of world. In our society, we are reminded that “nice guys finish last.” There used to be some semblance of courtesy in respect in our society, now it seems as if everything that happens is fueled by anger, revenge, coarseness. Where once men would apologize for “cussing” in front of a lady, now the lady may “cuss” equally with the others. Where once we had compassion for those in difficulty, now, perhaps fueled by an overload of people seeking help, we turn our eyes from those in need. In so doing, we often overlook real needs.
As the culture has become “de-Christianized” true followers of Christ are recognizing that following Jesus means that we are the cultural revolutionaries. We are the counter culture of this generation. Our journey into opposing this culture begins with these words of Paul: “let us do good to all people.” Maybe you’re not ready yet to go full counter-culture. That’s understandable. It can be hard. Begin today by trying to find one person to be good to. Don’t make it too easy on yourself, though. Find the person who is always snarling, and give him a smile. Find the person who is always mean, and show her kindness. Where ever you may be in life, make today the day you begin the process of fighting against our culture by doing good to all people.
Lord, it is so easy to get assimilated into our culture. At one time, that may not have been so bad. But now, look at us and forgive us. Show us grace and forgiveness where we have adopted the ways of our culture and give us the strength to show Your love to all people.