The unifying factor.

What should be the greater unifying factor – the fact that we love Jesus or that Jesus loves us?

A random thought, but one that begs a response.

            A few weeks ago, I was at Passion 2015 in Atlanta. Standing in a stadium full of college students, praising the creator of the universe, there’s a palpable joy, a feeling of unity. What a beautiful sight! Hearts transformed and moved.
            But.
            Walking out of that stadium, what’s our outlook? If we stick together, no one sees the ripple effects of those days. No one sees the shared love of Jesus. If our eyes are only looking for other people who love Jesus, the kingdom doesn’t grow.
            How we look at people can have a massive impact on our lives and the lives around us.
            Walking around my campus, it’s easy to look past people. To avoid eye contact, stick my head in my phone, to avoid even saying hello to my classmate.
            I can easily look for people who I know love Jesus instead of looking at people knowing that they were uniquely created by a loving God. He has a purpose for their lives, and he has a purpose for my life. And through his orchestration, our purposes get to intersect.
           Interactions start to look a little different.
           The simple hellos and conversations can take on new meaning and purpose. 
           My relationships aren’t based on performance but on my knowledge and belief that I am loved by God and the person next to me is loved by God.
           I love the unity that is found in the Church; I also love that when I exit the Church, I can take to heart what I have learned and truly try to become more like Jesus – “for He so loved the world.” 
           It’s the big picture – it’s not about what I can do, but what he has done; it’s not just my world, but the world.