Growing in God's love
But we don’t need to write to you about the importance of loving each other, for God himself has taught you to love one another. Indeed, you already show your love for all the believers throughout Macedonia. Even so, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you to love them even more. 1 Thessalonians 4:9-10 NLT
Once again, Paul commended the believers in Thessalonica for they continued to show love for one another. He had prayed for them that this abounding grace displayed in love should continue to be manifested. “And may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows” (1 Thessalonians 3:12). Love for one another is a hallmark that should be seen in the lives of believers. We were commanded by God to love one another. “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other” (John 13:34). Every believer has the capacity to demonstrate love because they belong to one family and have the same Father. Love that flows through us and expressed to others is not based on feelings but of the will. It is the Holy Spirit within us that teaches us how to love one another. “For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love” (Romans 5:5). So, when we are commanded to love, it is not something new to us for we possess love because of our relationship with God. But this love we have should abound more and should not be confined to our immediate family but should go beyond. God knows that we need to grow and increase in loving others. This is why He places us in circumstances where we find ourselves expressing our love to others. We have the inner compulsion to meet the needs of others. Once we make the decision to love others, there is joy and satisfaction within. When we obey God’s command to love one another, it will prove that we are followers of God (see John 13:35). Paul urged believers in Thessalonica to love even more for they cannot rest on their achievements and reputations. No matter how much we consider ourselves mature in our faith, there is always room for improvement on this side of eternity. We cannot say we have arrived not until we are with God in His presence. Remain faithful to His commands so that you will be found “blameless, and holy as you stand before God our Father when our Lord Jesus comes again with all his holy people” (1 Thessalonians 3:13).