Devotions this week based on the Message: “Hope Comes with Being Loved”.
This past Sunday we celebrated Mothers’ Day. Since the early 1900s it has been a day set aside in our country to honor and appreciate the work that mom’s do to love and care for their children.
We can’t underestimate the importance of love a mother shows. It is the first expression of love a child encounters. It also the first place a child learns how to love. A mother’s love is a pattern that a child is likely to follow through out their life time. How they were loved becomes how they love.
Usually we don’t have college courses on “How to love” (maybe it would be helpful!). Love as an emotion and an expression is more “caught than taught.” We experience love (or the lack of it). We observe what is loving. Because love becomes a model for others to follow. But the question is, who is our model of love?
The model for love originates in God the Father. Jesus said in John 15:9, “As the Father has loved me, so have I love you…”
The Father modeled love to his Son. How? We have a few examples. At Jesus’ baptism, the Father affirms publicly his love: “This is my Son, whom I love, with him I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). The Father trusted his Son. Jesus said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30) They were inseparable. At the end of his life, his Father received his soul (Luke 23:46).
This love Jesus models to his disciples. He affirmed them. He was there for them. He cared for them. He taught them. He trusted them with the message of his kingdom. He would be ready for them in heaven one day.
But it doesn’t stop there. Jesus said, (John 15:12) “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” Jesus wants us to take the love he has shown to us and show it to others. Love as we have been loved.
So we get the opportunity to be the model of Jesus’ love to those around us. Serving selflessly. Listening carefully. Giving generously. Leading humbly. Loving our enemies and more.
Having trouble loving others…or certain people in your life? I do too. I call them “extra love opportunities.” Where I get encouragement to love, even when it’s not reciprocated and infact at times scorned is to go back to Jesus. He loved his enemies. He loved those that crucified him. He loved … me when I gave him more reasons not to love me than to love me.
With this tremendous model of love given to me…I can, with God’s help, love in the same way.
Apply: Do you have someone in your life you are struggling to love? Review Jesus’ love for you and ask the Spirit for guidance on how to love the person who is challenging to you.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for the wonderful reality and example of your love for me! AMEN.