Guest Post by Lenny Hall of Sons of Thunder Ministries, with a special thanks to Al Robertson and his notes from Duck Commander Study Bible.
34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” — John 13:34-35 (NIV)
The fastest way to ruin your fellowship with others is to allow envy, boasting, or pride to stir up trouble in your family, community or church family. I call those the “three love busters.” By contrast, see what Jesus did to uphold fellowship while acting in service to His closest friends.
Sometimes you will see us ribbing each other, and giving one another a hard time. It’s what men do. But we here at Sons of Thunder have taken John 13 to heart. We really do love each other, and we have learned the importance of protecting the fellowship we have from negative influence like envy, boasting or pride.
Envy always runs toward hate and away from love. This is because when your envious of what another person has, you get eaten up inside with resentful desire. Love enjoys watching and celebrating with other people when they do well, but there’s not an ounce of joy in the bitterness that envy produces. Envy turns us ugly and ultimately drives a wedge between people.
Boasting is a verbal love buster. I find that the people who do the most boasting usually feel the most insecure. In fact, they’re usually the most envious of other people, which is why they brag on themselves; to try and make up for feeling less than others.
Pride is flat out vicious. Why? Because pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall (Proverbs 16:18). Pride doesn’t stop at envy or boasting. Pride paints a bullseye on other individuals and makes them the target of repeated scorn and disrespect. Pride isn’t trying to make up for what it lacks. It wants to take from others, tear down their self-esteem, spread gossip, or pick out the persons most sensitive flaws to bring them down a notch or two. There’s not an ounce of love in pride.
In John 13:34-35, Jesus gives a new commandment. This commandment wasn’t about rituals or traditions. It was about one thing: love. We’re commanded to live in loving fellowship with each other because when we do, the world will know we belong to Jesus.
– Lenny Hall
P.S. – Don’t forget the Men’s Meeting is held every 3rd Thursday @ 7:00 PM at Sons of Thunder Ranch, located at 1352 Ridgeview Rd. NW, Floyd, Virginia 24091. All men are welcome!