During the last week we had a lot of snow (50 cm) where I live. It’s one of these things that is fascinating and beautiful, but then reality bursts in and spoils it all. Everything looks truly stunning, especially when the skies clear and the sun shines, but when you try to walk in snow that deep you discover that it is really difficult. When the snow comes up to your knees every step is a struggle. For the first few days driving was impossible.

It’s when you get conditions like this that you start to see people helping others without being asked. Cars get stuck and neighbours or strangers start to help dig them out or push them along. Neighbours clear paths or share food with elderly or infirm neighbours. Everyone keeps an eye out for anyone in trouble. Loving your neighbour becomes the order of the day.

Or does it? Are we loving our neighbours or just helping them in a time of trouble? When the thaw comes and everything gets back to normal, do we still watch out for them? Do we even like each other?

Why do we find it so easy to help in times of trouble like bad weather? Is it because we really want to, or just because we think, “That could be me stuck in that car, so I had better help, or maybe no one will help me”? Do we help only because we might need it ourselves, only because we get something out of it? That is not love!

But I am told to love my neighbour and to love my enemy, and I try hard. I do! I do! But that isn’t good enough, because you cannot make love. Love isn’t something we can generate just by wanting, just by trying. It has to be there, or it will disappear as soon as the snow melts.

The purpose of my instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith. (1 Timothy 1:5-6, NLT)

Love doesn’t come from what we do. Love comes from what we are and what we have.  If we are true believers, then we will have a pure heart, a clear conscience and a genuine faith. Then we will not have to try hard. It will be happen. We will be filled with love.

And it will be love that doesn’t melt with the snow.