"By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." (John 13:35 NRSV)
Science tells us that sometimes our emotions take cues from the reactions of our bodies. For example, we are told that if we look in a mirror first thing in the morning and smile, we will put ourselves into a good mood. It is not necessary for us to be in a good mood in order to smile. We smile and the good mood follows. Knots in our stomach may tell us we are afraid. We may not have any consciousness that we are experiencing fear until our body tells us. The experience precedes the emotion rather than vice versa.
In the same way, many people have discovered that if they live out the Christian faith, if they seek to deliberately and intensely live out the life of love that experience will be self-validating. That is, in living out that ethic and that spirit of love, we meet the resurrected Christ, and from him we draw the power to be his disciples. In other words, we don't wait until we experience the resurrected Christ to become his disciples. We become disciples and then the experience follows.
Loving God, as your disciple and child, may I experience today a renewing of Jesus' spirit in my life. In Jesus name, Amen.
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