How God Loves!

John 15: 12-17
Acts 15:22-31 / Psa 57

Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.
(John 15:17)

Whatever the task doesn’t matter
In God’s love remain and believe;
Whatever we ask of the Father
In Jesus Christ’s name we’ll receive.

Jesus said, “This is my commandment: Love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. This I command you: Love one another. (John 15:12-17)

Reflection

To love others is to be obedient to the Divine Law of God. To withhold acts of charity, words of kindness, or forgiveness for wrongs done is to disobey this most fundamental law of God’s love. What makes us love people less is when we love the things of this world more. Jesus said, “The world hates you because you do not belong to this world.” (Jn.15:19) So many of the so-called privileged set in this world fail to see that the reason why they cannot establish genuine intimate relationships with others (including their own family) is because of their attachment to worldly things.

No amount of money, possessions, or power can ever satisfy our search for life’s meaning. Love alone is the answer. And our God manifests His great love to His children in mysterious ways that at first we cannot understand. A true story is told by Cheryl Walterman Stewart about her Norwegian grandfather who worked as a carpenter. He was commissioned by his church to build wooden crates for clothes and other materials which their parish was sending to an orphanage in China. Her story: “On his way home, he couldn’t find his glasses, so he drove back to the church. His search proved fruitless. When he mentally replayed his earlier actions, he realized what had happened. The glasses had slipped out of his pocket and fallen into one of the crates, which he had nailed shut. His brand new glasses were heading for China! It was the height of the Great Depression and he had spent twenty dollars for those glasses. ‘It’s not fair,’ he told God as he drove home in frustration. ‘I’ve been very faithful in giving of my time and money to Your work, and now this.’ Several months later, the director of the orphanage was on furlough in the US and visited all the churches that supported him in China, so he came to speak on Sunday night at my grandfather’s small church in Chicago. Grandpa and his family sat in their seats among the congregation. ‘But most of all,’ he said, ‘I must thank you for the glasses you sent last year. You see, the Communists had just swept through the orphanage, destroying everything, including my glasses. I was desperate. Along with not being able to see well, I experienced headaches every day, so my coworkers and I were much in prayer about this. Then your crates arrived. When my staff opened one, they found a pair of glasses lying on top.’ The missionary paused long enough to let his words sink in. Then, still gripped with the wonder of it all, he continued, ‘Folks, when I tried on the glasses, it was as though they had been custom made just for me! I want to thank you for being a part of that!’ The people listened, happy for the miraculous glasses, but the missionary surely must have confused their church with another, they thought. There were no glasses on their list of items to be sent overseas. But sitting quietly in the back, with tears streaming down his face, an ordinary carpenter realized the Master Carpenter had used him in an extraordinary (loving) way.”

Give thanks to the Lord for He is good. His love endures forever. (Psa 136:1) Father God, Source of all love, let all our thoughts, words and actions be guided by Your love; for without it, life has no meaning, and nothing in this world matters. Amen.

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