By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Several members of my family are cross fitters. So we often find ourselves captivated by videos of stellar cross fit athletes. I am particularly drawn to some of the female athletes. Some of my favorites are Katrin Davidsdottir and Sara Sigmundsdottir – both from Iceland. You can tell they are both from Iceland by their unique names. Iceland has a fascinating naming tradition in which people are identified by their father (and occasionally their mother). So Katrin Davidsdottir, is literally – Katrin, David’s daughter. She is known by whose daughter she is.
While our names can say a lot about the family we come from, most of us didn’t have a choice in our name or our family of origin. But we can have a say in how we are to be identified in this world… and it starts with our actions. Jesus describes a new way for us to be identified…by our love for one another.
The way we act towards others says a lot about who we belong to. Being known as followers of Jesus requires love. The thing about love is that it is all about action. In fact, it demands it as a by-product of the great love we have been shown by God. That overflow of love is best illustrated in our humility, our servanthood, and our sacrifice for others. What could be a better way to be identified?!