Back to Love (John 13:34-35)
Reflections on John 13:34-35
A Familiar Scar
In J.K. Rowling’s bestselling series Harry Potter, the eponymous main character is the sole survivor of a vicious attack by Lord Voldemort. When the dark lord murdered Harry’s parents, the child was marked with his signature lightning bolt scar. Anywhere Potter went within the wizarding community, his famous forehead brand marked him as the Boy Who Lived. In this fragile boy, witches and wizards saw that Voldemort was vulnerable and could be vanquished.
The Balance of Love
Our world is pocked with scars of oppression, abandonment, negligence, and abuse. People daily fail to love their own neighbor as well as they love themselves, the genesis of injustice. When this charitable virtue is absent, vices emerge to fill the vacuum.
When a person loves, however, they are branding themselves with a distinct mark. They are boldly declaring that darkness is vulnerable. Justice can prevail once again because the balance of love has been restored. We are loved so we can love in return. God eternally holds this affection for us, liberating us to demonstrate it to others, even when they fail to return it. Love will dispel the darkness.
Footsteps—putting feet on our faith
What is love?
Where does it start?
How does the lack of it impact justice?
Dear God, you are the beginning of true love. Without you, my heart bends in on itself, seeking only selfish gain. Help me to walk daily by the light of your love so I can shine that brightness on my neighbor. By Christ I pray, amen.