As we recognize Memorial Day, it is a good time to reflect on and appreciate those who have laid down their lives for the rest of us to be able to live free in the United States of America. It is a good time to pray for those who are actively serving, have served, or are surviving family of those who have died in service to our country. God gave us this unique nation based on Christian values and heritage. Many have served and died protecting it.
Yeshua demonstrated and taught that there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for his friends. He laid down His life for all those who choose to follow Him and submit to Him. We can be thankful for sure that our sins can be forgiven because of Him. We could never pay that debt.
Yeshua also encouraged His disciples to show this kind of love for one another as well… to lay down their life for one another. So, too, are we encouraged to lay down our lives for one another. At times, we may face a situation where we literally must make that choice in an instant. Other times we lay down our lives by how we live for others rather than living for ourselves.
As we read, we should not overlook that Yeshua said that “You are my friends if you do what I command you.” This is clearly important, but a different context in our relationship with Him vs. relationships with each other that we may consider friends. We should obey Yeshua to be His “friend”. We do not need to obey each other to be friends.
Disciples’ Relation to Each Other
12“This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. 13“Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. 14“You are My friends if you do what I command you. 15“No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16“You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. 17“This I command you, that you love one another.
Take time to pray for those who risk their lives or lose them for others. Pray also for their families. Of course, not everyone in uniform is righteous or acts with righteous motives, but many have sacrificed none the less to protect our country and our freedom. Pray also for the leadership in our government so that they would lead well and not recklessly. Further, pray for the people of our nation that they would hold in high regard those that serve to protect our nation and risk their lives to do so.
Take time to also pause and reflect on our Savior, Yeshua, who laid down his life for us so we could be forgiven and reconciled with the Father. Give thanks to him. Do not let that offer be wasted. Rather, submit to him, turn from your sin, and seek him. Let him be Lord of your life. You will find greater joy and peace in this world and after.
Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.