On John 14:15-21
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever.”
What a great promise to be given. “If you love me…” Jesus does not assume that everyone will love Him, but what if we DO love Him? What if we DO keep his commandments and are obedient disciples? What will come of this obedience? Jesus promises that He will talk to His Father about sending an Advocate, a Comforter, a Helper in the form of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth as recorded in John. This Spirit will come and abide in us, to help, to comfort and to guide us.
In verse 18, Jesus says “I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you.” This must be a puzzling comment in the ears of the disciples. Isn’t Jesus already with them? But we have an advantage, we know the rest of the story. Jesus is promising His return after He pays the ultimate price for our unloving, our sins. He makes this payment on the cross, He has made it for all who love Him, who try so hard to follow His commandments. And because we love Him, he comes back to us in the Holy Spirit, to help us in our daily struggles, to comfort us when we fall short, to bring us back into a right relationship with God. The Holy Spirit is there for us, all we have to do is listen to its call in our lives.
We are all called by the same God. We are also called to follow the same commandments, but each of us follows these callings in a different way. As we all follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit, we use our God-given gifts in ministry to those around us. Each of us are here as a result of a calling by God. Each of us have a place in our communities where we are working with other people who are called by God to make a difference in the lives of the people they interact with. It is through the Holy Spirit that we discern and re-discern what that calling is, and how we might carry out that calling in our environment.
We have just taken part in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, a week that reminds us of how we should look each day for ways in which we can work with others in our community to further the Kingdom of God, regardless of their own faith background. For it is through our unity in the Christ Jesus that we can work together, sharing our own unique gifts to spread the glory of God. As we are led by the Holy Spirit in and with our communities, much work can be done by the glory of God in the name of Jesus Christ.
As I close, I ask that we take a moment of quiet reflection to remember what Jesus has given us through the gift of the Holy Spirit, giving thanks for all that He has done. Also, let’s take a moment to recentre ourselves on what the Holy Spirit is leading us to do in our current circumstances, where we are in our lives and in our communities. Let us now take a moment to ponder these thoughts.
[pause for reflection]
“They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.”
Remember the gift that has been given, and continues to live within you.