1 John 3:19-24 NIV
 This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence:  If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.  Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God  and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.  And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.  The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.
Dear God, verse 23 reminds me of Jesus’ answer when we was asked what the greatest commandment is. He said that we should love the Lord our God with all of our hearts, soul, and strength and then we should love our neighbor as ourself. That sounds an awful lot like John saying here that we should believe in Jesus and love others.
It’s interesting to see what Peter and John took from their time with Jesus and brought into their ministries. For John, as I mentioned yesterday, it seems that he took his anger and self-righteous judgments of others and turned them into love and grace. There is still an obvious call to holiness, but it seems like, for him, holiness is first achieved by denying yourself and obeying your commands. And the first command is to love.
I’m sitting here and trying to go back and think about who I was 30-ish years ago and what some of the bigger areas were that you had to chisel off of me. I think the biggest was my insecurity and my neediness. Neediness is something against which I still fight. My need to be admired by others is still there, but it is still slowly diminishing. My neediness with my wife is much better than it was 20 years ago. I could go on and on with other things, but you get the idea. You have been working on my heart and soul for a long time now.
Father, help me to take my personal knowledge of you and use it to help others know you better. Love others through me. Help me to do what you command. Help me to do the work you have for me to do (both professionally and personally) and bless the fruit of that work as only you can. And do it for your glory and your glory alone.
In Jesus’ name I pray,