Think about those friends who know you best and longest.
Which friendships are the most precious to you?
What makes these friends so valuable?
Consider... God desires that sort of friendship with you!
“This is my commandment: love each other just as I have loved you. No one has greater love than to give up one’s life for one’s friends.”
It is an awfully high bar for Jesus to ask me to love others just as he has loved me, especially when he includes laying down life for friends. Most of us have a hard time imagining this, but, inspired by the words of Jesus, we convince ourselves that we’d be ready to act heroically when or if that day were to come. I’d like to think that of myself too. So, we’re ready, just in case, but realize that there is a very small likelihood of that ever happening. “Just saying, I’d do it,” we can say to ourselves.
Except here’s the thing: there are ways we can lay down our life for a friend every day. We do this by sticking out our neck to squash a rumor instead of being silent or by choosing not to laugh at the jokes that tear down a classmate instead of joining. “Just saying, I’d do it” puts off until tomorrow what we could already do today. So choose today to love like Jesus did.
Dear Jesus, please give me the courage to love, even when I don’t feel like it. Challenge my understanding of just what that love is and then give me the chance to show your love to others. Amen.
Go into your day knowing that even though God knows all about us, God still chooses to be our friend.
Be a friend of God today.