"This is My commandment: love one another as I have loved you." —John 15:12
Jesus commands us not only to love one another but to love as He has loved us! That means that we are to lay down our lives for our friends (Jn 15:13) and even for our enemies (Rm 5:8, 10). In this way, we will be recognizable as Jesus' disciples, because no one except Jesus loves his enemies by dying for them (Lk 5:27ff).
How are we, with all our selfishness, to love so divinely? The Holy Spirit will purify us by obedience to the truth (1 Pt 1:22) so as to produce the fruit of love in our lives (Gal 5:22). The Holy Spirit will cry out in our hearts, "Abba" (Gal 4:6; Rm 8:15). We will know that we are loved perfectly by our Father. Then we will be able to love in an amazing way, for we "love because He first loved us" (1 Jn 4:19).
One week from today, we begin the annual Pentecost novena. As the Christian community throughout the world prays during these nine days, the Holy Spirit changes our "culture of death" into a "civilization of love."
Come, Holy Spirit of love!
Prayer: Father, You are Love. I will live in You and in Love (1 Jn 4:16).
Promise: "When it was read there was great delight at the encouragement it gave." —Acts 15:31
Praise: Isidore gave liberally and sacrificially to those poorer than himself. God literally multiplied the seed he sowed and increased Isidore's generous yield, blessing him by giving him abundant crops year after year (see 2 Cor 9:6-11).
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997
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