THREE THAT FOLLOWBy: Darrelyn L. Tutt"Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek Me; and as I said unto the Jews, 'Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.'"John 13:33-35-------Easter is an adventure of love!On the heels of this passage comes Peter's attempt to articulate his distinguished and perfect love for Christ, which will be flatly and quickly refuted by Christ.This is a hard moment between Peter and Christ.The "denials" of Peter are placed out in the open before they come to be.Christ's love didn't hinge on Peter's behavior patterns;they hinged on a love superier and supernatural.This is what makes the passage so appealing, my friend.Christ tells us to love when the love is hard.Read it for yourself and reflect on the three verses that follow.See what it does in you.-------Christ had the ability to prophecy in advance the failures of Peter, and He also has the ability to prophecy "our" failures.Yet still, with full knowledge of our failures He affirms and reaffirms his unconditional love for us.And He tells us to love in like manner.He confers and imposes on us ... the command to love with open clarity.We are not to be hampered, hindered, or hateful to others in the sanctifyng process but only urgent and urging in our appeal to love deeper and come along beside.Indeed, Christ became fully human to reveal the extent of the Father's love for us in our frailty with a desire that we should do likewise. Love is a powerful and unforgettable sacred act. It bestows the same blessing and compassion it has received from God upon others.This is the true and holy nature of love;something only the Father can do through us.Unconditional. Unmerited. Free.-------THREE STUDY EMPOWERMENTS1) Read John 13 ... and especially the last three verses.How is Christ defining and acting out the message of love here?Why is this holy contribution so essential on the heels of His command to love?------2) Instead of giving up something as is so common in the Lent season; how about forgiving someone and loving someone at a deeper level.Instead of going without your favorite soda or snack, how about loving the guy you hold in contempt who's called your neighbor.------3) What do you love like?What does it cost you?What does it look like to you?Reexamine the context of love and concretely do what Jesus did ...and watch your "Lent season" change.Live the love adventure called Easter.-------Jesus answered him, "Wilt thou lay down thy life for My sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow till thou hast denied me thrice."John 13:38
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