This Command Can Lead to a Life Full of Excitment, Adventure, and Fruitfulness!

A new commandment I give you - love one another. As I have loved you so you must love one another. All men will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.

These are beautiful words. Nothing can compare with this. You will find them in the Gospel of John in the New Testament in Chapter 13. Do read them and receive whatever blessing Almighty God has for you.

But it is a Commandment - and it is NEW. I used to find that some people did not like Commandments and they did not like anything NEW. So they can have great trouble with what Jesus says.

Jesus gives His disciples a new commandment. It is a command - not a suggestion - and it is not optional - and it is not advice to be taken or ignored depending upon how you are feeling.

All commands and commandments are in force until the orders are changed, and I have no evidence that this order has been changed, nor has it been withdrawn, or modified.

What is significant is - this is how the world will judge the Church. If the world does not see disciples of Jesus loving one another then according to Jesus' words they have every right to arrive at the conclusion - "They are not Jesus' disciples"!

The goal of all we aim to do is to produce and grow and cultivate is the love of God - the love of Jesus - by the power of the presence of the Holy Spirit within us.

Notice this - it can be a tremendous comfort to you. Jesus said this - AFTER Judas left the room. Very few people are aware of the setting where Jesus Christ spoke these words. They were in the Upper Room, the night when he was betrayed and before He was crucified.

The love of God can take the edge off disappointment, and can enable us to be vulnerable to many things - not least, the lack of appreciation. Our motivation is different.

Do you realise that when God calls you, He chooses you and calls you to participate in one of the most exciting adventures in which any man or woman can participate, and He calls us to be involved in all this.

The call of God has taken me twice round the world. Oh, it has been hard work at times and dangerous - but exciting.

Many seem to think that serving Jesus Christ in the Church of Jesus Christ is dull and boring - never! And you go and serve in His love and the risen and living Jesus equips you and prepares you for whatever confronts you.

If it were not for the Love of Jesus Christ and the anointing power of the Holy Spirit I doubt if I would have been brave enough to make these recent visits to Uganda and Kenya. There were some difficult moments in the slums and out in the bush where I was teaching at Leaders' Seminars.

In Romans 12 verse 9 following - again - written to believing disciples, we see the fruit of love from a different angle.

"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good!

Allow God the Holy Spirit to grow that amazing love within your heart and mind and life. You never know where it will lead you and there you can be helpful and useful and fruitful.

"Loving Father, I have come to see that whatever else I possess, if I do not have Your love, then I am nothing. Help me always to be open to You so that love - Your love - may grow and deepen and be seen in me." Amen

Sandy Shaw is Pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship, Chaplain at Inverness Prison, and Nairn Academy, and serves on The Children's Panel in Scotland, and has travelled extensively over these past years teaching, speaking, in America, Canada, South Africa, Australia, making 12 visits to Israel conducting Tours and Pilgrimages, and most recently in Uganda and Kenya, ministering at Pastors and Leaders Seminars, in the poor areas surrounding Kampala, Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.

He broadcasts regularly on WSHO radio out of New Orleans, and writes a weekly commentary at http://www.studylight.org entitled "Word from Scotland" on various biblical themes, as well as a weekly newspaper column.

His M.A. and B.D. degrees are from The University of Edinburgh, and he continues to run and exercise regularly to maintain a level of physical fitness.
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