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The Other Way Around

If anyone loves Me he will keep My Word
Acts 15:1-2,22-29; Psalm 67:2-3,5-6,8; Revelations 21:10-14,22-23; John 14:23-29

Sermon Week Sixth Sunday of Easter Cycle C

Scripture Summary John 14:27

In a novel called, "Caught in That Music," a woman named Debbie is going to marry a man named Norman. Debbie's brother Jonas doesn't like Norman. He thinks Norman is dull, cold, disagreeable and unworthy of his sister. Debbie tells her brother to be more tolerant and tries to explain why. She says, "Nothing is ever completely the way you think it is, or the way you'd like it to be. I didn't love Norman right away. He loved me -- so much that I wished I could love him in return. Some people have to see love before they can love."

"Is that the way it works?" Jonas asks. "Because he loves you, you love him?"

Debbie replies, "Because I am loved, I see what you don't see."

We usually think that it works the other way around. Wouldn’t you tend to say, because I love someone, I see in him or her what you don’t see? We understand that. But do we understand that in our relationship with God in and through Jesus Christ, it’s the other way around? You are first loved by God. It was God’s love that brought you into being. And if you see the Divine love, if you see how much God loves you, then you can see something that no one else can see.

Former president Jimmy Carter said in his farewell address to the nation, “America did not invent human rights, it is the other way around. Human rights invented America.”

As Christians, shouldn't we see things in that same way? Shouldn't we see that as a nation "under God, " it is our caring and compassion that created a great nation and not the other way around?

Today's Gospel Reading contains a portion of Jesus' "Farewell Discourses." It begins with a call for obedience and ends with the teaching that to Love God, is to be obedient to His word. Jesus already has made it clear to the disciples that He is about to leave them. He says:

My little children
I shall not be with you much longer...
Do not let [...]

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