"Little children, let us stop just saying we love people; let us really love them, and show it by our actions" (1 John 3:18)
The story is told about two farmers. Every day, one of them would haul pails of water up the steep slope to his terraced field and irrigate his meager crop.
The second farmer tilled the terrace just below, and he would poke a hole in the dyke and let the other farmer's water run down into his field.
The first farmer was upset. Being a Christian, he went to his pastor and asked for advice. The pastor told him to keep on watering as before and to say nothing. So, the farmer returned to his fields and the watering of his crop, but the farmer below him continued to drain off his water. Nothing had changed.
After a few days, the first farmer went to his pastor again. The pastor told him to go a step further - to water his neighbor's crop! So the next day, the farmer brought water to his neighbor's field and watered the crops. After that, he watered his own field.
This went on for three days, and not a word was exchanged between the two farmers. But after the third day, the second farmer came to the first farmer.
"How do I become a Christian?" he asked.
There is a saying, 'Love your friends and hate your enemies.' But I say: Love your enemies!...If you are friendly only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even the heathens do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your father in heaven is perfect" (Matthew 5:43-48).