New Wine - Day 20

The Vineyard

John 15:9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other like I have loved you.

It is fair to say that the greatest harvest that comes from the vineyard is a harvest of love in the world. There is an example of love and a command to love all encapsulated in this particular text. Jesus shows us how he has loved us in the same manner that the Father has loved him. Then, we are asked to obey his commands, specifically to love one another so our joy will overflow. 

How do you love the people around you? Does giving love give you joy? It usually does. There is a reciprocity to love that is made clear repeatedly in scripture, and here is perhaps the greatest example of it. We are to love people the way that Jesus has loved us, which is based on God the Father has loved him. It’s pretty good company you keep when you decided to love in the way that Jesus has. 

And what I find most comforting is that when we are given a commandment, it is to love! I am constantly amazed when someone is confused by this. Jesus makes it explicit. But there are some that don’t believe that this commandment is enough. They constantly want to point us back to the Ten Commandments rather than understanding that by loving as Christ loved us, we can’t help but keep all of the commandments in our hearts. There is a confusion that keeps sinking in. 

I think the confusion stems from the reality that it is hard to accept that love is enough. When we have not yet experienced the love that comes from Jesus, then it feels like love is just another emotion. However, when we have experienced the love that comes from the sustainer of all life, when we feel the belonging and acceptance that comes from Jesus, we stop thinking we need more rules, and realize that the freedom that comes from Christ is the freedom to love without boundaries, as we are loved without boundaries. 

We can then realize that the vine has been taken care of by the good gardener, and we are living off the overflow of that love and care!

  1. What does love really look like to you? 
  2. Why do you think people want more rules, rather than more love? 
  3. What is the greatest love you have ever experienced? 

By Pastor Timothy Gillespie

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Chris Sequeira - January 19th, 2024 at 2:28pm

A decade ago I would have agreed with you, that love is enough. However since then I have experienced the truth of John 15:10 that states that when we obey we remain in His love. When my son attempted suicide, I learned that love is not enough. Tools and actions accompanied by love I think is what love well means.

Simona - January 20th, 2024 at 11:17am

I am very sorry for your loss. That’s one of the hardest things that could happen to a parent. I don’t have an answer we usually don’t…. I can only say that when something that hard happens we can only believe in Him who knows all…. That is when faith comes in. I know it’s easy to say … I will be praying for peace and understanding.

Thaddeus - January 20th, 2024 at 8:37am

Jesus continues to ask the impossible when he says to love like he loves. How can we love when we do not have thousands/millions/infinity years of experience of accumulating tools (ie conflict resolution tools, psychological therapy tips, reading other people’s needs, ability to heal physical ailments or fix the brain chemistry gone wrong). It seems He asks us to try to do the impossible in order for us to realize we need Him to complete this impossible process.

Paul writes ”So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.“

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭3‬:‭7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

God is the ultimate mechanic. He serves us out of love, he repairs what we need fixed. We try to do the same for others but we have incomplete tool sets. Often I find I try to fix someone’s problem with my metric wrench and they end up needing standard sizes. Some of my wrenches fit but often there are screws loose I cannot tighten for them. God is the only one with the infinite tool set.

Simona - January 20th, 2024 at 11:11am

Love above else is my religion my belief. However, it took me sometime to fully accept it. I needed to free myself from religion's doctrines and don’ts and do’s. When I fully accepted His amazing love that I can’t even describe it. You have to experience it! I feel His presence His goodness and grace and I love loving others. Because He first loved us…. Because of His forgiveness… Because of His mercy and grace I can share His love with others. Is it easy ? Most of the time I say yes. However, sometimes it is not easy at all… especially when the closest people hurt you…. Sharing His love and seeing people being touched by it it’s the best thing ever!