Read: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” John 13:34 (NIV)
Reflect: When I first became a Jesus-follower I felt on fire in my pursuit of God. I attended Bible studies, church, and any Christ-centered activities I could get to. I was all about it.
After a few months one of my close friends, who was not a Christian, made an off-hand comment that since I was “into” God now, I didn’t have time, energy or room for her and our other friends in my life. At first, I wore that comment with pride and even confided in one of my spiritual mentors that clearly I must be doing the God life right if non-believers noticed and felt distanced from me. I felt sure that this set me apart.
My mentor was quick to correct my thinking. Part of following God and reflecting him with my life doesn’t mean repelling all others, it should mean attracting them to me. My passion for God should lead into a passion for loving others. I should let them know I am for them, for our friendship, and for a deep and healthy relationship with them. The truth is that I would never be able to reflect God’s power, his hope and his love for all people if I didn’t seek to build and keep my relationships with other people. She asked me “how can they see how good God is if they never see him in action through his followers?”
That question and mindset has remained with me and is such a powerful force in loving our community. I want to live that out with my neighbors and co-workers and with other parents on the youth sports sideline. And together we live that out in our lives and in our participation in Serve Weekend and how we love, live, and give together.
Reflect: Do your friends who don’t know Jesus get to catch a glimpse of him in your life?
Pray: God help me live my love for you out loud. Show me how I can show others the work you’ve done in my life.