My neighbor is the nicest person I know, and she'll do anything for anyone who needs help. And yet she isn't at all religious, and says she's never found any need for God. How do you explain this? I thought only religious people were supposed to know what it means to love others. — Mrs. S.G.
Your neighbor's concern for others is commendable—but if she had Christ in her heart, I believe she'd be an even more loving and compassionate person. The Bible says, "If anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him" (1 John 2:5).
Love is universal; no matter who we are, we desire both to love and to be loved. Why is this? The reason is because God has put this desire within us (whether we realize it or not). To put it another way, God created us and planted His image within us, which means that we each bear something of God's character—and one of God's basic characteristics is love. The Bible says, "God is love" (1 John 4:16).
But something has happened to us—and that "something" is sin. Yes, we can love—but all too often our love becomes twisted and selfish. It may even become so dim that evil overtakes us. Like a deadly cancer, sin has dulled our ability to love the way we should.
Pray for your neighbor, that she will come to understand the greatest love of all: God's love. Because God loves us, He sent His only Son into the world to take away our sins—and when we open our lives to Christ, He comes to live within us and gives us a new capacity to love. Does Christ live in your heart?