“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”
After thousands of years of sincerely religious people bluffing and play-acting with love, God gives His children a new heart: completely new creatures, fully righteous, without any condemnation, who can actually live out this verse without it enflaming them to rebellion, like every other command had done before.
So, you’d think we’d automatically now fully love each other, meet deep needs, affirm each other, free each other and be used of God to bring one another in from the cold.
…Well, maybe not right away.
But eventually new life weaves through and, from the inside out, we begin to find ourselves daring this new way of life-maybe one beautiful relationship at a time.
In response to our most recent café conversation at boscafe.com between “Carlos” and “Hank”, a dear friend of mine, John Boring, wrote these profound words that left me stunned, proud and full of gratefulness. The goal of God’s instruction is love…and it eventually does win.
I’m sure there’s something I should tell you to do with this, some bow I should put on at the end of this. But I would be wasting your time, and mine. Enjoy.
“Man, listening to this conversation between Hank and Carlos, reminds me of a continuing conversation I’ve been having with a friend of more than fifty years. We were out fishing one day on Lake Powell, and I mentioned to “Newt” that I thought it amazing that we could be friends that long and never question what it was that cemented us together. So, we started kicking it around, but we were kind of reserved about it. You know, I said things like, “You’ve always been there for me, over the years. Always visited me, even when it would have been easier to not make the effort.” Newt was a bit reluctant to open up, kind of like Hank is with Carlos. So, I dropped the subject. But, when we got home again, I emailed him an eulogy that I thought I would say at his funeral if he died before me. I thought he should know how much I loved him and how much his friendship had meant to me. That moved him, big time. He wrote back with one for me, and I was floored when he said he started it about four years ago. Anyway, we then began to open up to each other, but in emails and letters. Amazing the depth of our love and friendship and even more amazing how difficult it was for us to write about it, much less talk about it in person. But, you know the really neat thing? The next fishing trip we went on, when we met at the lake, we hugged each other. First time we ever did that. Now, it’s as common as shaking hands used to be. I’ve known Newt since we were freshmen in high school, back in 1946, and we’ve always been close. But, now we’re closer than brothers because we openly admit our love and we accept that love for what it is. The highest kind of friendship, God’s love from me to Newt and vice versa.”