Welcome to the Sunday Devotion. I love the theme for this week – “Love One Another – Can We Do It?” We know “Love one another” as one of the great commandments, but we are being quite blunt in asking, “Can we do it?” Let’s look at that.
This is a true challenge. And by using the word “can” in “Can we do it?”, the question asks, “Are we capable of doing it?” Look at the adversity in our world, in our country, and in our communities and read this again, “Love One Another – Are we capable of doing it?” It’s a big question and we must look at it with hope. We must believe that we can do it. We need that hope. And as a faith community, we live that hope.
Let’s take a look at John 13:31–35, the scripture for this week. Jesus is talking to his disciples and saying that as his disciples they must love one another. He’s not directing this commandment this time to the world. I am a little surprised by this. Why is Jesus directing this commandment to his community of disciples? And by this statement, Jesus is directing this commandment to us as a community of disciples. This makes it a different kind of challenge. Are there people in your faith community with whom it is a challenge to love? Have you seen firsthand the power of a faith community that works through times of disagreement and love shines through? What a powerful experience and what a powerful witness of Jesus’ teachings.
Community of Christ has worked through differing thoughts and opinions using Faithful Disagreement and I find this to be an amazingly empowering action/reaction. We love one another even if we don’t agree. The commandment to love one another that Jesus told his disciples is for all of us. Allow the differences. Show the power of God in our lives, the teachings of Jesus, and embrace the Blessings of Community, the Worth of All Persons, and Unity in Diversity - just a few of Community of Christ’s Enduring Principles from which to live by.
If we show our commitment to this love commandment, this is how people will find meaning in Christ, God’s son. The invitation to know Christ will be alive. The communities of joy, hope, love and peace will grow. Because as Jesus said, “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (v. 35). It’s not “Can we do it?” Instead, it should read, “Yes, let’s do it!”
Author: Bonnie Barber
Various authors throughout the Chesapeake Bay Mission Center and beyond provide these thought-provoking weekly devotions.