“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
John 13:34 NIV
Love One Another
Canadians are known globally for being friendly and welcoming. A website that helps potential immigrants to Canada says: “It seems Canadians live up to their welcoming reputation, with more than four in five expats surveyed for the latest International Expat Insider survey describing Canadians as ‘friendly’ – double the global average.” In fact, more than three-quarters of those questioned said they fitted into the local culture easily, with most expats saying they had local friends.
Friendship is a gift. Having a friend you can count on, a friend who stands with you no matter what, a friend who loves you when the entire rest of the world is against you, is a true gift. I hope you have a friend like that. It is easy to love a friend like that – it’s natural. What isn’t natural is the command that Jesus gives in John 13:34: “A new command I give you: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” No wonder Jesus calls this a new commandment – it is so unlike the love spoken about by the world. Before we knew Jesus as Saviour and Lord, before our sins were forgiven and our hearts were turned towards God, we were enemies of God. We didn’t love Him or obey Him. In spite of this, God still loved us and drew us to Himself. Jesus commands us to love like that – to love those who not only don’t love us, but who oppose us, who we would consider an enemy. We can only do this as we focus on God’s redeeming love for us, empowered by God to love others as He first loved us.
These have been words from the heart.