Today's passage: John 15:12-17
"I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you." John 15:15
For whom would I lay down my life?
How would I describe my relationship with God--close and comfortable or distant and formal?
How does the fact that God considers me His friend affect my view of our relationship?
Think about what Jesus is telling us here: that everything He learned from His own Father, He shares with us. He keeps nothing from us; all that is His is ours, too. That kind of relationship sounds a bit like the kind you might share with your closest friend--and that's exactly what Jesus wants. Sure, He desires our obedience; sure He wants us to follow in His steps and live as He commands. But Jesus doesn't want us to hold Him at arm's length, merely going through the motions of prayer, worship, and religion. More than anything, He wants our hearts and our love. Jesus wants to be in a living, breathing relationship with us.
Ask for change: Lord, I want to experience a real relationship with You. Help me grow closer to You each day.
Consider what's real: If you're more inclined to practice a formal method of prayer, perhaps try a more relaxed, conversational type of prayer with God today. Try to engage in a conversation with Him, not just at specific, set times during the day, but continually, as you go about your everyday life. Ask Him for guidance before you make decisions at work. Ask Him for advice as you parent your children or navigate other important relationships in your life. Thank Him for the small blessings He bestows on you throughout the day. Integrate Jesus into your daily life.
Additional verses to consider: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, Jeremiah 29:12-14