We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.
Not only does God love you, he also loves other people. Shocked, right? But Christ sets an example for us: we should love the people that God loves. Just a few verses earlier, John contrasts Jesus with Cain, who is an example of a person that hates the people that God loves, since he killed his brother Abel. So, hate is to murder or take; whereas, love is to sacrifice or give. Maybe you’ll never give up your life for someone, but verses 17-19 goes on to talk about showing love through our actions. In true Christmas spirit, we love other people when we give sacrificially of our material possessions to meet their practical needs.
Jesus, show us how to love the people you love. You gave up your life for them, and you are calling us to follow your example. Make it plain to us, show us clearly how we can practically serve others in love. God, if you are calling us to give sacrificially, I pray for peace, joy, and a bold confidence that you are pleased with us. Amen.