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Monday, 25 April 2016

1 John 2:7-8

Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.

An old command. In a sense there is no older command: love. (Deuteronomy 6:5; Joshua 22:5) I am reminded of the lyrics of a Misty Edwards song:
Did you learn to love? That's what You will ask of me
Did you learn to love? Not about my ministry
Did you learn to love? Not about my money
Did you learn to love? Did you learn to love?

We will be measured by our ability to love. We will face our maker and he will ask us whether or not we did what he asked us to do. And yet, today, weary and feeling frustrated with almost everyone and everything I find that I am struggling to summon love. I am easily frustrated. Quick to anger. Just plain grumpy. But John is insistent: this is foundational stuff. This is nothing new. You have always known this is part of the cross you are to carry. To follow Jesus is to love one another. (Mark 12:30, Matthew 22:37, Luke 10:27, John 13:35) There is nothing optional about it. 

And so when - like today - love is kaput, compassion is fatigued, and hiding in my house feels like the best option, I must turn again to the fount of love. I must look again to the one who pours his love out into my heart (Romans 5:5) and ask for help. Father, teach me how to love.

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