If you came over from Encouragement for Today, welcome! I’m so glad you are here. In this devotional I shared the challenge of loving like Jesus, and what that might look like. Today I take that a little deeper.
It’s fascinating to watch Jesus interact with the disciples.
They trailed him everywhere he went. They slept close by, whether under the stars or in the upper room of a stranger’s home. They watched as people mocked him or threw verbal stones. They were witnesses as people cried out to him in pain, suffering, and loneliness.
They had a front row seat as Jesus prayed for people, spoke life into them, uttered truth, and pulled them close, touching them when everyone else had said, “Unclean, unclean, unclean!”
So, when Jesus shared this new commandment, they understood what he was asking them to do.
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” John 13:34-35 (NLT)
This wasn’t a vague feel-good commandment.
This commandment came with specific instructions. “Love others like I have loved you.”
When I think about the ways that Jesus has loved me, it brings me to tears.
He has been patient with me.
He has been close, whether I’m on a mountain top or deep in a pit.
He has believed in me, when I struggled to believe in myself.
He has forgiven me.
And that’s only the beginning of the ways Jesus has loved me.
What does it look like to love like Jesus loves us?
We may struggle with this question because people have hurt us. We may believe that this kind of love might open the door for someone to take advantage. Perhaps we don’t think we can love like Jesus because we are angry or hurt. Or maybe we feel we have too little to offer.
Isn’t it funny how we make our questions of faith so complicated? In this commandment, Jesus was asking the disciples to take a good look at the ways he has loved them. . . and then to share that with others.
[bctt tweet=”If you listed the ways Jesus has loved you, and then offered that to others, how would it change things? How would it change you? https://wp.me/p4jbdw-4H8 #livingfreetogether #freeaudiodevos ” username=”suzanneeller”]
A few weeks ago a friend was hurting. I didn’t know how to respond. However, loving her like Jesus has loved me meant that I could show up in that hard place. I could listen. I could remind her of her value.
When I did this, the burden she carried in was a little lighter when she left.
Will you join me in a sweet challenge today?
When God places that person in your path today, no matter who it is, will you ask this question: How can I love this person like you have loved me?
As we love others like Jesus loves us, it changes things. Maybe a conversation takes a different turn. Maybe a grudge is exchanged for mercy. Perhaps we listen and offer empathy or prayer, or hold back words that would add weight to an already heavy burden.
That’s world-changing faith, but the most drastic change starts in our own hearts and that’s a beautiful gift.
Q: How has Jesus loved you? (Write it in your journal or share it here.)
I’m so excited about this offer from Proverbs 31 Ministries. They are offering my book, Come With Me Devotional, to everyone for a gift of any amount. It’s a hardbound, embossed, beautiful devotional that will allow you to walk with Jesus five days a week all year long.
Get your copy of this timeless devotional today to help you draw closer to Jesus through every step of your journey. It’s also a great, early Christmas gift.
A freebie for you
I professionally recorded several of the devotions in this book. I want to share five of them with you today. I pray they encourage you!
More than a carpenter
You are wanted
Thank you for the presentation!
Very timely message, Suzie, as I get ready to do some volunteer work today. Jesus, How can I love the person, in front of me, like you have loved me. I am going to share this message with the other volunteers today!!
Love listening to you read the devotions too!!
Nancy, you reflect the love of Jesus. Thank you, friend. Enjoy your day as you volunteer. Love you.
Suzie, as always your messages hit home. I have recently been volunteering at a transitional housing project for women affected by addiction. Painting, gardening, cleaning areas that will be their living areas during their recovery. I was reminded of a phrase stated by one of my co-laborers, “Leading by example is better than any Sunday sermon”. Praying my behavior truly reflects my beliefs. Thanks for your words of encouragement today. Blessings on you, your family and your ministry, Jackie Freeman
I love this, Jackie!
Thank you…for the reminder to take our eyes off of ourselves and our circumstances and focus on Jesus❤️And to love like Jesus.
I have your devo and love it.
Thanks, Laurie. <3
A beautiful reminder! Thank you 🙂
So sweet are His words of love to us. You reminded us of this today Suzie thank you so much. It made me look at my two littles running around in my living room dancing to the Greatest Showman. Getting a bit out of control. Needing to slow down before they get hurt. I wonder.
How can I love them like Jesus loves me when He watches me running around and dancing with no cares, no concerns for the world around me? No clue I’m headed for danger.
He gently gets my attention and draws me close to Him to slow me down. He doesn’t yell and tell me to stop running. He embraces me so that the world and it’s noice fades away and all I see and hear is Him. Then He whispers, I love you. Soon I’m calm. Im focused. I’m safe in His love.
He releases me and says go My child. Go and love someone for Me the way I love you.
With all that said. It’s time to go and embrace my littles, to slow them down with a gentle embrace so they too feel the love. His calming love.
THIS. If we’re (I’m) honest, I excuse myself and pull the “But I’m NOT Jesus” card. This verse blows that mentality out of the water. He didn’t ask us to BE Him here, but to love like Him. Specifically in the way He has loved us.
Making a list of these things is critical to a believer for so many reasons. Not only will it renew a sense of humility, it will rouse a sense of confidence within us that by His Spirit, guided by HIS words and HIS ways we are able to go forth in HIS POWER!
I love this so much!!
He knocked it out of the park through you on this one! Thank you for sharing it💕
What a penetrating question — to remember all the ways Jesus has loved me (when I’ve been unlovely) and how that would change the way I love othesr. Thunk. That’s the sound of that question going straight to my soul.
Thank you. I scrolled through several of the last posts that I’d missed and loved your encouragement to break down the walls and extend the hand of friendship.