Reading John 13: 31-35 (NRSV)
Jesus has been with his disciples for years. When he gives them a new commandment, they should know the love he is talking about: “Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.”
Jesus has also said we should love our neighbor as ourselves.
Love neighbor as self. Love one another as Jesus loves us.
How do we love our neighbor if we don’t love ourselves? How do we love one another without knowing that Jesus loves us?
I believe the two commandments connect. It should be easier to love ourselves if we are convinced that Jesus loves us. And, acting from that conviction, we can more easily love one another and our neighbors.
So many people in this world live lives of despair: never feeling loved, never feeling that they deserve goodness, never loving themselves. They have something missing in their spiritual core.
Sometimes we compound the problem by heaping insults or ignoring their need.
People we meet every day may only know love if we show it to them.
Love one another, as Jesus loves us.
Jesus loves us!
Love as if you have that love in your heart.
Let us pray. Loving God, we thank you for Jesus who showed us your love. Forgive us when we forget to share your love with one another and all our neighbors. May we show love to those who doubt their lovability today. Amen.