Author : David
‘As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.’ (John 15:9-11 ESV)
‘I’ve loved you the way my Father has loved me. Make yourselves at home in my love. If you keep my commands, you’ll remain intimately at home in my love. That’s what I’ve done—kept my Father’s commands and made myself at home in his love. I’ve told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature.’ (MSG)
Jesus condensed the law into two commands – to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love others. He also says that the only reason we can actually love others – or even experience love ourselves – is because He first loved us. And He loved us with the deepest, most intimate love possible. Jesus told his disciples that he loved them in the same way that the Father loved Him. As disciples of Jesus, we can take that for ourselves. That we are loved in the way that God the Father loves God the Son. Just let that sink in for a moment. When the God of eternity loves us that strongly, loving Him in return is very easy to do.
Jesus takes this further and tells us not only to love Him, but to abide in his love. The Message translates it as, ‘make yourself at home in my love.’ So how do we make ourselves at home in his love? For me, it started by admitting that I was really lost without him.
Recently, I had given too much thinking time to questions about different theologies and how to read the Bible. It wasn’t a crisis of faith, but my focus was on critical thinking instead of on kingdom thinking. It was through worship that I realised my faith isn’t in ideas, or theology, or religion but my faith is in a loving God – the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. When my perspective switched to see that God’s love is bigger than my questions, I found them a lot easier to live with. The most obvious way I can think of to love Jesus is through prayer and worship. The more we talk to Him, listen to Him and praise Him, the more we’ll abide in his great love. When our attention and affection is turned to Jesus, our doubts, fears and worries fade. In their place, Jesus tells us that ‘my joy will be in you, and your joy will be full’.
Today, I will turn my eyes upon Jesus, look full in his wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of his glory and grace.