Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
1 John 3:18
I need these words today because in matters of Christian living, especially towards people, I can be a big talker who struggles to live like I say I do. It is all too easily done. I was raised to appreciate people who "do good", leading me to adopt a personal kind of perverse hypocritical Pharisee-ism. And we Pharisees do like to brag. We like to define life by what we say we believe and particularly by what we don't do. And that makes John's admonition a warning to people like me.
If I love Jesus, I will do what I say I believe. If I love and follow Jesus, I will act toward people with His love. If I truly love my Savior, I will not just talk about a problem or some suffering, I will give myself by action to do something about it.
This is not activism. It is love in action. That's a huge difference. It isn't about being caught up in a cause. It is about loving Christ, being like Him, loving the people God made on this earth in His own image by doing and acting self-sacrificially (in deed) with gospel motives and message (in truth) toward all people. It is a love that reaches out to family in Christ, and to those who don't yet know Him and dearly need the gospel to transform them. It is a love given through both word and deed.