These things I command you, so that you will love each other. John 15:17
In the book of John, chapter 15, verses 1 thru 16, Jesus spends a great deal of time explaining His desire for us to stay connected to Him. He uses a brilliant and easy to understand analogy through branches and a vine. Branches only grow and bear fruit when they are connected to a thriving vine. We are branches, God is the vine and love is the fruit. If we aren’t well connected to God, we cannot love like God.
So what does it mean to love like God? Once again in this passage we see God use a term for love which in the original text means an unconditional, self-sacrificing love for another that seeks to raise the other person up. This isn’t a casual “I love ya” type of love, this is an “I’m with you in the muck” type of love. It’s hard and pain-filled, beautiful and life-giving. It’s the love of Christ who gave up His life.
Jesus’ heart is that we show the love of heaven while we are here in Earth and we do that by being empowered through God. We won’t do this perfectly so don’t make that a goal. Love is sloppy and messy and, it’s real so that’s all ok. Abide in God, and He will guide you and help you.
Abide to love.