Loving Like Jesus

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15:13

He was loved by all—those were the words used to describe Giuseppe Berardelli of Casnigo, Italy. Giuseppe was a beloved man who rode around town on an old motorbike and always led with the greeting: “peace and good.” He worked tirelessly on behalf of the good of others. But in the last years of his life, he had health problems that worsened when he was infected by the coronavirus, and he eventually died in the hospital. A friend who knew him for more than twenty years said he would’ve given up his potential spot in the intensive care unit for another younger patient if he could have. This reveals the character of a man who was loved and admired for loving others.

Loved for loving, this is the message the apostle John keeps sounding throughout his gospel. Being loved and loving others are like a chapel bell that tolls night and day, regardless of weather. And in John 15, they reach somewhat of a zenith, for John lays bare that it’s not being loved by all but loving all that’s the greatest love: “to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (v. 13).

Stories of those willing to offer sacrificial love always inspire us. Yet they pale in comparison to God’s great love. But don’t miss the challenge that brings, for Jesus commands: “Love each other as I have loved you” (v. 12). Yes, love all.

By: John Blase

Reflect & Pray

Loved by all and love all. Do you get those mixed up sometimes? Why or why not? What might sacrificing for a friend look like today?

Loving God, please help me to love as You love me.