John 13:34-35 – “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
Tomorrow is the designated day to dress up like someone or something else and go around and collect candy. People across the country will be pretending to be something they are not just to get sugar that they don’t really need. Yep, I said it – “don’t really need.”
I don’t want to focus on the candy today but rather on the dressing up part. This is a socially accepted time to be someone or something other than yourself. But don’t people do this every day? Don’t people put on a mask and walk among us with pain in their heart and destructive thoughts in their minds? Aren’t there people that we hear of every day who do something that no one would have ever dreamed that they were capable of?
As followers of Christ, we need to be genuine. What you see is what you get. There should be no mask, no false pretenses, no hidden agenda. In my book, hiding something is lying and nothing gets me fired up more than someone lying to me. My kids know that lying will get them in more trouble than pretty much anything.
In these verses, Jesus was encouraging His disciples to love one another. He meant it too – He reinforced it 3 times in two short verses. He didn’t tell them to hide their love. He didn’t tell them not to love those outside their little group. He wanted them to show it. He wanted everyone who came in contact with these guys to know that they were His disciples. There was to be no doubt, no falsehood, no misconception.
What about you? Are you hiding behind a mask? Are you dressing up like a “Christian” every day and playing the part? Are you going out into the world all dressed up looking for the sweet things that you think Jesus has to offer only to get home and find that you have a bag of rotten fruit?
It doesn’t have to be that way. Jesus is ready to take your mask and give you the real deal – His love, His salvation, His peace and His joy. And that, my friend, is way sweeter than anything the world has to offer.