Jesus said, "I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
In the Christian spiritual tradition, love is not a suggestion or an aspiration, but a commandment. The authors of John's Gospel have Jesus use the term 'commandment' deliberatly, just as every word in John's Gospel has been chossen very deliberately, It is a word taken from the Jewish tradition from which the Church sprang. It's a word that relates 'that which is good to do.'
A commandment isn't an order to be obeyed just because it's been given as a commandment, it is something we are called to do because it is good for us, good for community, and ultimately good for the world. The commandments of the Hebrew Scriptures were not rules to be obeyed, but guidelines as to how to live a good, harmonious, whole, and holy life. The commandments were given to Israel to order life following God's way of being - a way of justice, love, equity, and peace.
In this Jesus not only shares it as commandment, but lives that love - in the way he lived (just before these words he showed loving humility by washing the feet of his friends), the way he died, and the love that was stronger than death in resurrection.
Love, as shown by Jesus, was not a high ideal, but a love that was to order the world in the way of well being, and a love lived out in all of Jesus' ministry.
Bless us with Love, O Merciful God;
That we may Love as you Love!
That we may show patience, tolerance,
Kindness, caring and love to all!
Give me knowledge; O giver of Knowledge,
That I may be one with my Universe and Mother Earth!
O Compassionate One, grant compassion unto us;
That we may help all fellow souls in need!
Bless us with your Love O God.
Bless us with your Love.
- Author Unknown