We are a society that is obsessed with the idea of love. I say the idea, because too often society doesn’t actually want love, but lust, obsession, or devotion. As a society, we love the emotion of love which, in itself, is shallow and unsatisfying. As a society, we fall in and out of love so quickly about half of the marriages that occur end in divorce. As a society, we’ve forgotten that “I love ice cream” and “I love this person” don’t actually mean the same thing.
But there is great news! We have not been called to live by what the society dictates. We are more than the culture around us. As a Christian, we know there is a difference between a worldly love and a Christ-centered love. We know that love is shown by serving those around us. We know that love is selfless. As a Christian, we can take advantage of Valentine Season to share the love of Christ to the world.
John 13:34-35 states “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” Part of being a devoted follower of Christ is reminding the world that they don’t have to be satisfied in what the world has to offer, that there is something so much greater. In this passage of John and throughout the next few chapters, Jesus displays his teachings to the disciples so that they may emulate Him.
Christ shows at the very beginning of this dialogue, the beginning of John 13, a high act of humility and love that the disciples had difficulty grasping. He got down on his knees and washed their feet. It was one of the lowest jobs and yet, here was the Savior of the world on the floor. He showed love, devotion, selflessness through this one service. In a world obsessed with “love”, what better way to reveal ourselves as disciples in Christ than through acts of service? The world will take notice because in a culture all about “me”, helping and serving others is all about Christ.
Further, Paul writes out in 1 Corinthians 13 a love that all Christians should adopt towards one another. As we read it, we can ask ourselves simple questions to remind us to be lights in the world: Have I been kind? Have I been patient? Have I been humble? Have I been truthful? Have I been selfless?
When people look at me, do they see Christ?