A Response to Violence – Part 5
The Courage & Character to Love
Jesus said, “I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other. This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, when you love each other.” John 13:34-35
To daily live in thought, word, and deed the love of God made known in Jesus Christ is the mark of true discipleship.
It is also the strength of vital congregations, the goal of spiritual formation, the hope for which we live. The love of God made known in Jesus Christ can be embodied today through your actions, your words, and your thoughts.
Modern day prophets, like Martin Luther King, Jr. remind us of these truths. He writes in A Testament of Hope, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
Where do we find the courage and desire to love each other?
T. M. Anderson writes,
“The goal of spending time with Christ in prayer is to have His character become our character. For our life to be hidden in His life, his nature to become our nature, and His habits our habits. It is possible to become so intimately acquainted with a practice, a way of doing something that you can do it without thinking. It becomes second nature, natural. When we find the secret place of abiding in Christ, our ordinary, daily interactions with people will become oh such more than mundane. They will be majestic opportunities to fulfill God’s purpose. We will become fruitful Christians. All fruitfulness of this kind flows out of intimacy with Him.”
Our hope is in Jesus who gives us the ability to love each other as he loves us. It is by loving one another that we show the world that we belong to Jesus. Our courage to love comes from our willingness to engage in a life-changing relationship with Jesus.
Do you think becoming more like Christ could be a response to the violence in which our culture participates?
Prayer for Today
O God, show the world your love through me. New every morning is your love great God of light and all day long you work for your children’s good. Stir up within me the desire to serve you in trust and obedience; the desire to not only do good but to be good; the desire to live peaceably with family, friends, colleagues, neighbors, strangers, enemies; the desire to surrender this day and every part of my life: family, friends; fears, failures; finances, fantasies; focus and future to your love in Jesus Christ. Make me aware of the people around me today so that I might be a blessing to someone somewhere today. I offer myself to you in and through Jesus Christ. So let it be!
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