Live and Love in the Name of Jesus

by Christine Sine

good samaritan - van gogh

I am struggling today, not because I am discouraged or disheartened but because I am challenged once again with the radical call of the gospel. And the centre of my struggle is the question Why do I think this is so radical, it is meant to be ordinary living for followers of Christ?

Live and love in the name of Jesus probably sums it up. Or as Jesus himself says Love the lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind and love your neighbour as yourself.

Why does that seem so radical to us? At the centre of our sinfulness is a turning from God and neighbour to self. Adam blamed Eve, Eve blamed the serpent. Neither of them wanted to take responsibility for their own actions. Self preservation triumphed over community good. And the result was isolation and alienation – from each other, from God and from God’s good creation.

This is something that I find I constantly need to be reminded of. It is so easy for all of us to fall into the sin of self centredness from which I often feel all other sins radiate. Jesus death and resurrection unleashes a totally new form of existence in which the giving of oneself in love takes us from the death of isolation to the true life of fellowship and community.

Reflecting on that this morning I wrote this prayer

Let us give up our lives today

in love for Go and neighbour.

Let us give up self centredness

and offer ourselves to the world.

Let us give up isolation

and join the fellowship of God’s family.

Let us share in the shaping of God’s world

laying down our lives in nurture and help for others.

 

I would love to hear your thoughts on this and reflections on What can you do today to move away from the isolation of self centredness to the otherness of love for God and neighbour?

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