December 17, 2013
READ: 1 John 3:11-18
Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions (v.18).
The news came on Christmas Eve. My wife put down the phone, walked into the bedroom and burst into tears. We were living in Australia then and had been visiting family in Brisbane, but after the call we decided we needed some time alone. So we packed our bags and started the 12 hour drive home to Sydney. That phone call put an exclamation point on a 2010 full of broken dreams.
We withdrew by ourselves for a few days, trying to heal. Then, on a Saturday morning a few days later, we started replying to the emails of our concerned friends. “Is there anything I can do?” my friend Darren wrote. “You’re one of the few people I could handle talking to right now,” I replied. “Got any time for a coffee?” Darren lived 2 hours away. “I’ll be there by midday,” he said.
Darren and I met in a coffee shop. I recounted the sad saga and he listened to my pain and anger for the rest of the afternoon. He came back to our place for dinner, prayed for my wife and me, then left in the evening for his long journey home.
Darren is a busy man with a wife and kids and plenty of things he could’ve been doing with his Saturday. But he relinquished it for a friend. Echoing Jesus’ prayer in Gethsemane, he gave up his will to do another’s (Matthew 26:39; 1 John 3:16). His love wasn’t offered in word only, but in action.
Love doesn’t think, speak or even pray, alone. It does (v.18). Love listens, spends, carries, helps. It buys groceries and brings meals, washes dishes and pays overdue bills. It jumps into a car and drives for hours to see a friend in need.
True love acts. Real love does. Just like Love Himself. —Sheridan Voysey
Read John 15:12, 1 Corinthians 13 and 1 Thessalonians 4:9-10 and consider what God’s Word describes as true love.
What act of love can you do today? How has God revealed His true love for you?