When my wife and I were faced with a dilemma, we went to our pastor for advice. If we did something we felt led to do, we knew we would disappoint a lot of people who wouldn’t understand. If we didn’t do it, we would disappoint someone we wanted to reach for Christ. Our pastor simply asked, “What would love do?” We chose to show love to a person many wouldn’t have in hopes of winning them to Christ one day.
In John 13, Jesus was having dinner with the disciples for the last time. Verse 1 says He loved the disciples throughout His ministry, and still at the very end. He knew that the devil had already prompted Judas, but He also knew He had all authority. It was then that He got up from the table and demonstrated love. He washed the disciples feet. They didn’t understand, and even Peter pushed back against Him. In His explanation Jesus said, “I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you” (NLT).
Galatians 5:13 says, “For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another” (ESV). The word for “love” here is agape. It’s the type of love that is not driven by emotion. It’s the type of love that does something for the benefit of another person regardless of how you feel. That’s the kind of love Jesus demonstrated. It’s the kind of love the calls us to regardless of what others think. It’s acts of love that help win the lost. It’s acts of love that show grace which is what God did for us while we were yet sinners. We need to follow that example more.