7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 9 By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us. 13 By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. (1 John 4:7-13)
Most believers think of 1 Corinthians 13 as the Love Chapter, and it most certainly is a great one. But when I think of Love I think of 1 John 4. I have come to believe that 1 Corinthians 13 defines love, but 1 John 4 shows us the fruit of Love. Most importantly, it tells us that if we love one another, then God’s love is perfected in this. In the past, I have both seen and been a part of some seriously ugly interactions within the Body of Christ, and I believe that it grieves the Spirit and Heart of God, when we treat one another this way. I have had to seek forgiveness and repent of things like this countless times in my Walk with Christ. Yet I can only recall one time, and that one happened very recently, where someone came to me for forgiveness about something. Now this does not include my marriage, or my children, for within a family, forgiveness is needed on an almost daily basis. But to have someone ask my forgiveness on an issue was one of the most humbling and precious privileges I have ever known. Truly, if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.
Forgiveness is a huge part of God’s Love, both extending it and receiving it. We all stumble in many ways, none more often that what we say and how we say it to one another. So I encourage you this day to pray and ask God to reveal in your hearts if there is anyone you need to forgive and/or seek forgiveness from. Notice that the Word says that if we love one another we will experience two Fruits:
1) God abides in us
2) His love is perfected in us
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35
Sometimes I wonder if the world can’t see Jesus, because we don’t treat each other as Jesus would. Just a thought to ponder and pray about.