“This is my commandment: love each other just as I have loved you. No one has greater love than to give up one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:12-13
The other morning I went for a jog. Now, I’m not an avid runner. I do so because I know that exercise is good for me. It gets me moving, my heart pumping, and I feel much better afterwards. One lesson I’ve discovered about exercise though—it’s results are much greater when it is consistent. Exercising sporadically is OK, but it will not have the lasting results our bodies need.
The same principle at play in exercise is true in many other areas of our lives as well. For instance, love has a greater impact when it is demonstrated consistently. Maybe you’ve heard the phrase “Love is spelled T-I-M-E.” Sporadic displays of love are wonderful, but our lives and those around us will benefit more when it is a steady part of who we are. We cannot expect others to know our true feelings without regularly communicating, and more importantly, showing our love. Love modeled through commitment is what motivates us to get out of bed in the middle of the night to comfort a child, take a meal to a neighbor, or provide free childcare for a single mom so that she can run errands. The principle of consistency is that, over time, it adds up.
Jesus was an expert at this. His words and actions constantly revealed his love for the world. Time and again, Jesus acted out of love. He cared more for those around him than he did for his own needs every time. Then, in a way that punctuated it all, he laid down his life. Jesus was a consistent demonstration of love.
Let me ask you, would those around you say you regularly demonstrate love? What steps can you take to establish more consistency in this area?