“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” –John 13:34-35
God is love and He wants us to imitate Him by loving others like He does. God goes so far as to say that you can’t love Him if you hate your brother or sister. What? Yeah, you can’t truly love Him if you choose not to love His people. See the verse below:
“Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.” –1 John 4:20-21
Love (greek word: Agape) is not a feeling here. It is a choice. That is why God can tell us to “love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44). It’s a choice, not a feeling. Again, what is love? See below:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. –1 Corinthians 13:4-6
Father God, help me to love like you. Help me to see the areas of my life that need to change and the ways I could love more. Help me love those who offend me because I know you love them. Change my heart and help me to put on love daily. In Jesus' name, amen.