Sunday 15 February 2015

6th Sunday of Easter Year B

Among the different religions in the world, one thing which makes Christianity different is that love is part of being a Christian, and being a Christian mean one needs to love. In other words, love is part and parcel of being a Christian.

But what does it mean to love as a Christian? In the second reading, St. John reminds us: "My dear people, let us love one another since love comes from God and everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God. Anyone who fails to love can never have known God, because God is love." Not many of us realise the implications of what love means. Some of us think that we are loving the way God loves us, but actually more often than not, our love has got strings attached. Our love tends to be a selfish love, a "what's in it for me" love, or a love with conditions attached.

We are capable of loving the way God loves us only because we know and remember how much God loved us. Before we can begin to learn to love as Jesus did, we must be aware of how much we are loved by God. Love is never easy and is something we constantly struggle to do. But we need to remember that love isn’t about liking or disliking someone. Love is a decision, a choice and a commitment. We can decide and commit ourselves to love someone, even when we do not like that person. That’s love. This is possible only if we are reminded of how God loves us even when our love for him is not perfect and regardless of who we are. As Peter came to realise in the first reading: "The truth I have now come to realise is that God does not have favourites, but that anybody of any nationality who fears God and does what is right is acceptable to him." God accepts and loves all of us, He does not love selectively as some of us may do.

Loving others is only possible when we remain in Christ’s love, and we can remain in Christ’s love when we keep his commandments. Today, Jesus reminds us in the Gospel: “This is my commandment: love one another, as I have loved you.” Let us thus set aside our pride, our ego, and our prejudices, and truly love the way God loves us, so that Jesus' own joy may be in us, and our joy be complete.

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