Since it is the month that we are told we have to think about love, (shouldn’t we be doing that all the time?) I thought I would share with you some things I have been thinking about around love. In light of our tense political situation and the growing rise of hate crime in our society I think that we are losing the ability to see others as God sees them and to respect them even if we don’t agree with them. When our society gets like that then I think that we all need to look at what motivates us. And we, as Christians, need to ask ourselves, what do we base our actions on? Is it the love that Jesus showed us? Or are our actions based on our own ego or selfishness? I know when I look at myself in the mirror I often find it hard to answer that question. And that is because I can feel myself judging people way before I realize I am supposed to love them!
So what do we do? Well I think the story of the washing of the disciples’ feet in John 13 gives us some clues. Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and then he told them to “love each other in the way that I have loved you.” He didn’t talk at them but he showed them how to love. He moved quickly to show them that when things feel as life is bearing down on you and there is nothing you can do about it, when you can’t see a way forward or anything that you could to make a difference that is when you love. Just when everything seemed to be falling apart he spoke to them of responsibility. Just when they saw how frail and weak life is and how frail and weak their own ability to live up to their promises, he called them to acts of greatness.
“Love one another, even as I have loved you.” This will be the identifying mark of this fellowship, Jesus says. This is not call to simply feel something or an abstract instruction. Rather it is a commandment to do something. Love is something you do. When all you can see is judgment and anger the Lord calls us to love one another even as he loved us. This kind of love stitches us together and reminds us that we are not alone and this love is not something that we can do alone.
It is not easy but when I feel like judging I am going to try to remember to love, to act and to “Love each other, one another, love each other in the way that I have loved you. Walk together, and whatever come, love each other in the way that I have loved you.” Graham Kendrick wrote those words and they are going to be my ear worm for this month of love. How about you?