721 N. Memorial Drive, Lancaster, OH 43130 // Main Service: Sunday 9 & 11am // Movement Youth Sunday 5:30pm

Loving Jesus

John 14:23-24 (NLT)

23 Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. 24 Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.”


When I was young, I always used to wonder why in the world in John 21, Jesus kept following up His question to Peter of “do you love Me?” with a simple command to “feed my lambs.” However, after becoming a parent of multiple children, I have personally experienced how intricately linked love and actions really are! Even when reading the entirety of John 14 in preparation for writing this devotion, it brought me up against a hard truth: what we do is in direct correlation to how we love.

Jesus repeats it over and over in different ways: “If you love me, obey my commandments” (verse 15), and “All who love me will do what I say” (verse 23). He even says of Himself that “I will do what the Father requires of me, so that the world will know that I love the Father” (verse 31).

This means that what we do reveals the hidden priorities of our hearts. Oh boy, I would much rather excuse my actions as something I just end up doing... so I can continue to convince myself that my intentions are what really matter.

Intentions are tricky, though! I fully aim to read my Bible every day, but how often my time gets swallowed up by the seemingly urgent. I meant to obey His prompting and send that encouraging gift, but I waited until the appropriate time had passed by. I had it in mind to let that leader know how much their testimony meant to me, but I couldn’t conquer my discomfort. I had planned to invite that family over when God asked me to, but I got too tired to put forth the effort.

Oh my. How quickly my intentions become the smoke and mirrors I hide behind, while my love goes unfelt, unrealized, and incomplete because I didn’t actually obey Him.

We have to learn close the gap between our hearts and our hands! Once we realize that our physical hands are the outworking of our heart’s love, we will know how much we need the power of God. For our actions to really flow from our love, we need His Holy Spirit to work in us to help us actually obey His commands, and not just intend to. We can only fulfill our verse for today, “All who love me will do what I say” (verse 23) by humbly asking for His supernatural grace and power to flow through us, and to help our love translate into real action! “For apart from [Him], you can do nothing” (John 15:5).

Action Steps

Take a moment right now to think about some intentions you have been harboring that have been keeping you from truly obeying the commands of God. What are you putting off, ignoring, or meaning to do that is keeping you from actually doing the action He requires?

Spend some time in prayer, asking Him to help you love Him better today, both with your heart and with your hands.

Lord Jesus, I don’t want my love to remain incomplete! Help my heartfelt love to instigate real outward action. Help my obedience to flow from my love for You. In Jesus’ name, amen.  

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