You might remember a show about a bar called “Cheers” – the theme song included these words:
“Sometimes you want to go, where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.”
Jesus taught again and again that people will know we are His disciples and abiding in Him because of our love for God and each other.
Deep down, everyone wants connection and to be seen as a valuable person. This is the gift God gives us and we are commanded to freely give each other.
I’m inspired to press in even more aggressively in love and connecting with people through Christ. In John 15:9-12, Jesus explains this so beautifully.
“I have loved you just as the Father has loved Me; remain in My love [and do not doubt My love for you].
If you keep My commandments and obey My teaching, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and remain in His love.
I have told you these things so that My joy and delight may be in you, and that your joy may be made full and complete and overflowing.
This is My commandment, that you love and unselfishly seek the best for one another, just as I have loved you.”
Amazing love! We can see here these life-changing gifts:
1. Jesus loves us just like the Father loves Him. This is pure, unconditional, perfect love that never wavers.
2. Jesus instructs us to not doubt His love for us and to remain in it. A life-long relationship with guaranteed follow through from His end.
3. The result? Delight and joy! Complete and overflowing joy!
We show our love by keeping His commandments – the main commands are to love! Love God and Love others.
He recaps in verse 12 – “This is my commandment, that you love and unselfishly seek the best for one another, just as I have loved you.”
This is how we do the “they’re always glad you came” part. God fully accepts and loves Jesus… Jesus loves us… We love each other!
But what about the name? How can we know everybody’s name?
We’re part of the human family made up of Jews and Gentiles in Christ. Ephesians 3:14-15
“For this reason [grasping the greatness of this plan by which Jews and Gentiles are joined together in Christ] I bow my knees [in reverence] before the Father [of our Lord Jesus Christ], from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name [God—the first and ultimate Father].”
Our Father has given us all the name of Jesus. When we see and connect with other believers, they are family and we are commanded to love them like the Father loves Jesus and like Jesus loves us!
This is something I think about and pray about most every day. I want to get to know and understand God and Jesus more. A huge part of everything they do – all the time – is love. Generous, lavish, joyous, unconditional love. When I talk to someone, can they see and feel that in my eyes and my smile and my patience?