Faith and Love II: Actions Are Louder Than Feelings

I spent a lazy Saturday afternoon in bed and watched a bunch of movies, one of which was The Last Kiss, with Zach Braff, whom I love from Scrubs and Garden State (though I here he is an a-hole in person). But hey, sometimes you can fake things outwardly but it is hard to hide who you are inside. And sometimes it is the other way around. Sometimes it's easy to fake who you are inside and hard to fake it outwardly. Let me explain.

There was an interesting rebuke of Zach Braff's character in the movie when he is caught cheating on his pregnant girlfriend and he proclaims his love for forgiveness:

"Stop talking about love. Every asshole in the world says he loves somebody. It means nothing. It still doesn't mean anything. What you feel only matters to you. It's what you do to the people you say you love, that's what matters. It's the only thing that counts. "

In light of recent posts and actions, this somehow was especially poignant to me. It's easy to internalize feelings, shape them, touch them, and let them distort your vision of actions past and planned. But all that really matters is what you do and the effect on the ones you love. And it is here, I probably get mixed grades. Of course all relationships involve you and others, so you can't take all failures on the chin.

I think this same premise follows for your faith. I care less about what your faith is and more how it affects others. So I find it difficult to call Islam a religion of peace, when fanatics strap bombs to themselves and kill civilians in the name of Allah. Similarly, I find the Christians are un-Christianly when they condemn gays and single mothers, and the Pope declares other religions as "defective."

Your faith should be like your love. What does it bring to those around you? What is the effect of your love in people and in God? Do you use love as a lever or as a lens?