FRIDAY OF THE FIFTH WEEK OF EASTER
If you read yesterday's and today's Gospel, you might be feeling a bit of deja vu. Today's Gospel is shortened a bit from yesterday's to highlight another critical aspect of this reading: the Lord chooses us to be His friends.
No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain. John 15:13-14
Friends are the people we chose to share our lives with; when something good happens or when something unfortunate happens, they are there to share our joy and help us bear our grief. Thinking of my dearest friendships, these are the people who love me without fault or measure, and I give them unconditional love in return. That intimate friendship is what Christ offers to us, one of complete love.
You and I did not wake up one day and say, hey, you know what would be the best?
No, our relationship with God does not work that way. Jesus calls us to be His friends. He chooses us to be His friends so that we will go out and bear fruit. As Christ's friend, He commands us to love one another. If we are true friends of Christ, we will bear fruit with the love He gives to us! When we act with love and speak with love to one another, people will be drawn to the source of that love, which is Jesus Christ.
Imagine offering love to a world that has come to expect indifference. If we love everyone with the unconditional love Christ gives to us, we will change ourselves and the world around us.