Do you love me? This question was famously asked by Jesus to Peter when Jesus had risen from the dead.
Jesus told His disciples to feed His sheep, telling them that they needed to focus on loving people and not just on activities.
Expressing love is all about selfless interactions with others. In previous sermons this month, we have learnt how important it is to value people, that is the real expression of love. Jesus was saying to Peter, focus on the people, teach the people, feed the people.
People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care, in other words, people might not care about what you say if they don’t see the reflection of love.
Your capacity to love people stems from your connection with God. As Jesus told His disciples that if they loved Him there are things that they needed to do, not for Him but for other people.
I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.
~ (Revelations 2:2-4)
Here, we can see that though the members of the church in Ephesus were busy doing good works, they failed at loving God and loving each other. They were focusing more on the activities than on a relationship with each other.
We have two sets of Christians in the word:
- The Martha kind of Christians; who are more involved in activities and doing things rather than in the relationship with God.
- The Mary kind of Christians; who are more interested in building a relationship with God.
There is working with God, and there is working for God, Working with God is the most important thing.
Working for God can be taken away, we might not always be able to work for God, but we always have the ability to work with God. When we don’t work with God there is a tendency for our love for Him to dwindle.
It doesn’t really matter what work we are doing in the church or what position we hold, the only thing that matters is that we have a relationship with God.
So, do you really love Jesus because of your own selfish gains? Or because you have a personal relationship with Him.
Sermon excerpt from Midweek sermon by Pastor Kayode Olutayo – Wednesday 22, February, 2023
Watch this sermon here.