We’ve been praying recently through the aspects of our Identity: whom we desire to be. We’re Abiding, then Loving:
“Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You will seek me, and just as I said to the Jews, so now I also say to you, ‘Where I am going you cannot come.’ A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:33-35 (ESV)
Christ speaks this to his disciples immediately after Judas leaves their presence at the Last Supper. These are the last moments that Christ has with his disciples all in one place, and he begins to speak to them with this message: love one another, so that others will know you that are mine.
Love is the source of our strength, the root of our hope, and the inspiration for our ministry.
We have the blessing to be ambassadors, but with that privilege comes a grave responsibility. As the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians:
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have no love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have no love, I gain nothing.” 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (ESV)
In praying through being a “loving community”, it is our question: what could life be like if the people we are sent to knew us only by our love? To what extent would the gospel advance further if we were known as the community of sent people who embody Christ’s love for others?
We have the wonderful opportunity to be beacons of hope and a people who lift others out of sorrow through the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ. Our first priority in response to Christ’s command is to find all avenues by which to spread His love.