Today our Gospel is from John 13:31-33a, 34-35. It’s a bittersweet Gospel because, in the beginning, Jesus is speaking about how he and God are glorified in what Jesus has done. What Jesus has accomplished on the earth glorifies him as Son of God and Son of Man and God the Father. Jesus also states that if God is glorified in him, the Son of God, God is glorified in himself. Kind of twisty-turny, isn’t it? However, we see in just these few lines, Jesus telling the disciples that his mission on earth is coming to an end.
In the next part of the Gospel Jesus says, “My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.” This must have been disconcerting for his disciples as they know by now that when Jesus says something, it is the truth. This tells them that he will be going home to his father.
Lastly, Jesus gives them a new commandment: love one another. To love all people the way he has loved them. To top it off, Jesus now tells them “This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” We have heard this command before, haven’t we? We heard it from God the Father, from Jesus himself, and now he reinforces how important this command is.
Brothers and sisters, it is not easy to love another, especially someone who may have hurt us in some way. This means that we may not have mushy feelings inside for the person who has hurt us. It does mean that we have to make a commitment to embrace this commandment as Jesus did on the cross when he forgave those who tortured and crucified him. Jesus made a decision to forgive, and that is what we are called to do as his modern-day disciples! As I said before, it will not be easy but certainly worth the effort to become a full and loving disciple of Jesus.
Peace and All Good,