Summary: “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends. John 15:12
A True Friend lay down his life for his friends-part-2
“This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you." (John 15:12-15NASB)
This verse in the Gospel of John tells us a lot about revealing God`s love: Laying down our life for others means putting them first and making their need more important than our own. It means we have to give ourselves up for one another. When we go out of our way to meet a friend's need, when we are willing to spend time, resources and energy with someone --and are willing to go out of our way and to give ourselves up for others, we are laying down our life, a part of it at least, for that person. This is what Jesus had in mind. With living for a friend requires us to be committed to that friend.
The text begins with the command of Jesus: I command you to love one another. The fact that this is put in the imperative mode means it is not an option in our life. It is not something we do if we feel like it. It is to be a deliberate response to another person whom we know to be in the family of God, regardless of how we feel toward that person. We all know how fully Jesus Himself exemplified this. His is the greatest love that anyone can demonstrate toward friends. By seeking to show love to our friends, family and those who also know Jesus, we reveal love to those who don`t know Him. Our love bears testimony of His life. We can look to the Saviors life for examples of true friendship: Perfect love, service, and commitments. The verse is about being selfless and sacrificial in our actions towards others rather than selfish. Jesus was committed to his disciples and to those He was trying to save. He served them throughout His ministry. One great example is the washing of the Apostles feet. In John chapter 13, we find the passage where Jesus washes His disciples` what it means for us today is that God wants us to serve other people, to honor and esteem them above ourselves. When we do this, we show God`s love and are laying down our life for others.
To each one of us friendship has a different meaning. For all of us it is a gift. Friendship needs to be cherished and nurtured. It needs to be cultivated on a daily basis. Then shall it germinate and yield its fruit. Nurturing means providing for, caring for, taking care of, helping to grow and making the other feel heard and understood. Emotional responses to nurturing are a feeling of calm, warmth, tenderness, peace, relaxation, being soothed. There are times in your life where you will come across someone who gives you advice, makes you feel better about life, and sets you on the right path. You might wonder if that person is a friend, mentor, or both. Most importantly, mentoring is about helping others to grow, whether it developing life skills, learning how to deal with tough situations or just sharing experiences with someone who can listen and understand.
Bible says "There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." Proverbs 18:24b This friend will never fail you, His name is Jesus. He said “For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother." (Matthew 12:50)
JESUS CHRIST will always be your friend, even when you are not friendly, or when others fail you. However, HIS goal for our lives is that we would bless His life by answering His prayer in John 17 for Covenant Love to be manifested – "We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And He has given us this command: Whoever loves God MUST also love his brother. 1 John 4:19-21 NIV
Nurturing Friendship is about being there for someone on their journey through life. Understanding them, listening to them, encouraging them, supporting them and Making them feel worthwhile, building their confidence and helping them to believe in themselves. Moreover being a positive role model. Mentoring friendship really works to change lives. In general, an effective mentoring relationship is characterized by mutual respect, trust, understanding, and empathy. Good mentors are able to share life experiences and wisdom, as well as technical expertise. They are good listeners, good observers, and good problem-solvers. They make an effort to know, accept, and respect the goals and interests of a friend. In the broad sense intended here, mentoring friendship is someone who takes a special interest in helping another person develops into a successful individual with continuing guidance and support.