Seems impossible, doesn’t it?
Love all? The scope is too wide. Wouldn’t it be more realistic to scale the sample down a bit, or a lot? Maybe it would be more acceptable to say “Love your family, your friends?”
Then there is the issue of how freaking difficult it is to love some people. You could probably think of a few people in your life. Who comes to mind when you think of the word “difficult”? When we think of those people, we don’t want to love them, and we don’t feel we need to. Or if we have a sense that we should love them, we can justify not doing so because they are so difficult.
The needy person, the long-talker, the negative person, the complainer, the arrogant one, the know-it-all.
The person who always raises their hand to answer every question. (I didn’t plan on writing this many examples…I’m on a roll now, so as you can tell, I have some complaining going on inside me!)
These are difficult people to love! We would rather not spend time with them. We would rather avoid them.
And yet Christmas is about an amazing act of love to a people that were not lovely.
Loving the unlovely. Is this not what the birth of Christ is all about? The Bible describes it this way: “the people walking in darkness have seen a great light.” Praise God that he did not turn his nose up at unlovely people. Praise him that he lovingly gave himself to reach out to his people who needed his love.
Christmas is a time for worshipping God because he loved the unlovely. It is also a reminder to us to do the same.