TITLE: That’s Some Serious Lovin’
DATE: August 9, 2019
TEXT: John 13:34-35 - ESV – John 13: 34-35 - A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
n that text Jesus told us to love others by following the example of how much He has loved us.
It’s a powerful command and a great idea, but…. My reply to the Savior begins with the story of a North Carolina farmer who drove his wagon into town with two high-spirited horses. He hitched them up in front of the General Store and was about to enter when his horses were frightened by a strange sound. They ripped away from the hitching post and started to run.
Moving quickly he managed to get in front of the pair and grab the reins. Maddened by the shouts of the spectators, the horses dashed down the street with the farmer still clinging to the bridles. They ran until a Good Samaritan tried to flag them down.
Frenzied, the horses rose on their haunches and then came crashing down… upon the farmer. By the time the townsfolk managed to free him from the horses’ hooves, the farmer was dying. A friend tenderly asked him, “Why didn’t you let them go? The wagon wasn’t worth all this.”
The farmer was able to gasp out, "Go check the wagon.”
They did, and there, still asleep on the wagon’s wooden bed lay the farmer’s four-year-old son. There lay the son who was so loved, his father was prepared to die for him.
I believe most of us would have copied his noble act if our children were in danger….
But would the farmer, or any of us, have made a similar sacrifice for the child of somebody else? Possibly… I suppose some of us might possibly go so far. Indeed, I’ve known one or two other Christians who might honestly have sacrificed themselves for a total stranger.
But would that farmer, or even the best of believers, have hung on if a mortal, and long-term , enemy had been in the bed of that wagon? Would we have hung on if that wagon contained someone who had beaten us, spit in our face, tried to stone us, told all manner of lies about us, and was bent on killing us?
That is what Jesus did during His lifetime.
That is what Jesus endured, as He hung on to completing the Father’s plan during which He was sacrificed so we might be reconciled with the heavenly Father. Jesus hung on, and died, so that we, His self-proclaimed enemies, might be saved. He hung on, when we would not.
You see, on their own, human beings do not have the capacity to love others with the intensity and integrity shown by our Savior. But when the Spirit reveals how the Savior has given Himself for us; we can be transformed.
That’s why, when the Lord says to me, “Love as I have loved,” I can reply, “Dear Lord, my love cannot equal Yours, but may it resemble Yours. My love may not be as strong as Yours, but let it be the same kind as Yours.
WSE PRAY: Dear Lord Jesus, You continued to love me, even though I had given You no cause to do so. Now, let me reflect, in the best way I can, that love to others around me. Especially let me love those whom I have found, up to this point in time, to be unlovable. In Your Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along with three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html