LENT 2020 – Called to a life that pleases God
As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are all called to a life that pleases God. Let us learn to discover His will as much in our choices, our characters as in our service, our passions, our work and our dreams. Each week, through these meditations, let us also take the decision to put the Word into practice by coming with concrete action(s) for our lives. This time of Lent, let us walk together to enter into God’s plan of love.
Called to love like Jesus loves
Today, let us read John 13: 31-38
When Jesus finished washing His disciples’ feet, He put on His clothes, had a short debriefing session, and invited them to eat the Passover meal with Him. He dips a piece of bread in the dish, hands it to Judas, the latter takes it, eats, and then goes away.
Then Jesus begins to share His last words with them: Love one another. As I have loved you, love one another. The last words of a dying man. In many cultures this is taken very seriously.
Have you ever imagined how the world would be like if we really took Jesus seriously? Love one another. An expert in the Torah once asked Jesus, “Who is my neighbor, the one you ask me to love?” Like him we can also ask, “Who is one another?” Our holy cluster? Those close to me? The Christian family? Knowing Jesus, it is all of the above, and more, much more.
The words of a dying man: read the Holy Scriptures, don’t neglect the synagogue, remember the Temple sacrifice, organize to write four Gospels at least, Friday night Praise & Worship, and purity of doctrine. All these are good, and do wonders. They are practiced here and there, and we keep coming up with many more new things to do. But they are not what He asks of them. The dying man has just one thing: Love one another.
Just before these words, Judas had walked out. And after these words Peter exclaims: I will lay down my life for you. Judas, who will betray Him. Peter, who will deny Him three times. Jesus eats with them His last meal. He does not chase Judas. Later He will not mention one word to Peter about His denials. Instead, He will ask “Do you love me?”
Jesus is asking for radical love, not sweet feelings and kind sentiments. His command to love is wedged between betrayal and multiple denials. He washed the feet of both, the one who betrayed and the one who disowned him. We cannot love like Jesus by going to the cross. Only He can go to the cross. I cannot. You cannot.
But what we can do like Him is wash one another’s feet. Meaning we are called to be humble, to lower ourselves and to serve. Remember Mary in our message a few days ago? She stooped, and washed the feet of Jesus, as an expression of her love for receiving forgiveness and a new life.
Love is all around us in songs, poem and films- and yet our resources soon dry up. How then can we go on loving? How then can we love as He has loved us? By making our home in His heart, by dwelling in His love. Make God our love. He is a source without end.
“By this the world will know you are my disciples.” By this they will know… So let us love one another, or let us serve one another, bending low as Jesus did – yes, let us love… for the sake of the world.
Jehovah, our Papa, thank you for pouring your love into our hearts by your Holy Spirit. Give us the mind of Christ who emptied himself, taking the form of a servant. Help us love those difficult to love – even if today it is by prayer only. Amen.