John 21:20a,24 – Then Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had leaned on His breast at the supper. This is the disciple who testifies of these things, and wrote these things; and we know that his testimony is true. (NKJV)
The writer of the Gospel of John does not identify himself by name in the text, but five times, he describes himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved”.
One day as I thought about what it must have been like for John to know Jesus’ love, I felt a Holy Spirit “nudge” to say my own name, followed by “whom Jesus loves!” After saying that a few times, I began to notice and treasure in my heart truth about Jesus that had just been information I had read or sung before.
Here are three truths that captured my attention after beginning to meditate about Christ’s love for me.
Jesus made the universe. Jesus owns creation. Jesus is. Every day when I read my Bible, more truth about Him feeds my soul and sticks in my heart to whisper love at the most unexpected or needed times. Beginning to say and think, “Pat, whom Jesus loves!” has made it effortless to speak of Jesus’ love to others.
Stating aloud in private, “Pat, whom Jesus loves!” has enabled me to consider myself and all people in that light. Swept up in Christ’s love, more and more, I find myself asking in prayer, “Lord, what do you want me to say/do at this time and in this place?” Answers to those prayers bring simple guidance and confidence.
Contemplating Jesus’ love as portrayed by the writer of the Gospel of John led me to find the easy yoke and light burden Jesus said comes when we learn of Him. Eugene Peterson coined the phrase “unforced rhythms of grace” to speak of Jesus’ easy yoke and light burden:
Matthew 11:29-30 – Walk with me and work with me — watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. (MSG)
Have you been looking to live more freely and lightly? Please consider yourself loved by Jesus, and say so often!
Abba Father, we make this prayer in the name [the person and the presence] of Jesus Christ our Lord. Thank You! Your kingdom is at hand! You enable us to enjoy life because Jesus came, lived, was crucified and resurrected, and now, with love, intercedes for us in heaven. Amen.