Love – John 14:15-21
One of the deepest questions we can ask is: “What is God’s will for my life?” In today’s gospel, Jesus gives us the answer: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” In other words, if we love Jesus, He will enable us to live according to His divine teachings.
To love God is first of all to accept being loved by Him. When we accept this love, we become free from fear and trouble. Being free from fear, we become free from compulsion; and thus our way of seeing others begins to change. Once our way of seeing begins to change, our behavior will also begin to change. Today, the Gospel invites us to examine our love relationships with one another and our ways of loving.
St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta is one of the best examples for incarnating the love of God in real life. She showed us that it is possible to love even the unlovable and to make a difference in this world. She spent her life picking up the lepers and the homeless from the streets and showing them the face of God. This was her source of joy. She found God and heaven in the slums and in the afflicted.
Once Mother Teresa said: “The other day, I dreamed that I was at the gate of heaven. St. Peter said: “Go back to earth. There is no slum up here.” She truly believed that the most terrible poverty is loneliness and the feeling of being unloved. She said: “I think today the world is upside down and is suffering so much because there is so very little love in the home and in family life. We have no time for our children and we have no time for each other.” When was the last time, sitting down with our family or talking with our family, we felt our heart was on fire — the fire of love?
True love consists not in “getting” something from the loved one but in “giving” something to the loved one. I remember a story of a bee that went to different flowers to drink their nectar (sweetness). One day, the bee went to drink the nectar (sweetness) of a water lily. The whole day, the bee drank the sweetness from the water lily and slept inside its petals. After sunset, the petals closed while the bee was inside of the petals. When the bee woke up from a deep sleep, it realized that it was inside of the petals. The bee was disturbed and frightened. The water lily said, “You cannot go out until tomorrow; after the sun rise and open my petals. If you want go out now, you can break my petals with your stinger and you can go out.” The water lily was not only giving the sweetness of its life but ready to give its life itself for the bee.
This simple story is a real example of self-giving. Real love demands total sacrifices and self-giving. Jesus not only gives us the love commandment but Jesus showed His love by sacrificing His life for us. Let us practice Jesus’ commandment by loving our brothers and sisters and in this way, we can remain with Jesus always!