As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
The Artful Dodger says to Oliver Twist: “Consider yourself at home. Consider yourself one of the family. I’ve taken to you so strong. It’s clear we’re going to get along. Consider yourself well in. Consider yourself part of the furniture. There isn’t a lot to spare! Who cares?! Whatever we got we share!
“Make yourself at home in my love” is one paraphrased translation of Jesus’ desire, “Remain in my love.” The image suggests a warm welcome that invites integral participation in the life of a family, learning from one another the ways of love, for loving one another is at the heart of Jesus’ commands.
Making a home with others isn’t easy. We each have our way of doing things. Habits and practices that seem perfectly rational to us can drive others crazy. This is the gift of living in community.
Learning to love requires openness and adaptation to others in a way that we remain true to who we are and our core values. Making a home with Jesus is no different. The good news is that we are not asked to be someone different than who we are.
We make room for Christ in the home of our hearts by becoming aware of and then letting go what is in the way of growing into the essence of our best, most loving self. With joy, the Dodger’s companions sing: Consider yourself our mate. We don’t want to have no fuss, for after some consideration, we can state consider yourself one of us!
Love consists in sharing
what one has
and what one is
with those one loves.
—St. Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises #231