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Day 17: Jesus Is In Love with You

Reflect: Yesterday, we looked at the analogy of Jesus, as the Vine, and us, as the branches (disciples). Remember, healthy things grow. As a living branch that is attached to the vine, your life will be spiritually growing from the Vine. Jesus’ life is running through the veins of your life as a branch – He is the source of life. What are some of the outcomes of a living branch that is attached to the Vine? The fruit Jesus expects from the branches is first and foremost, love. Jesus said that He loves us as the Father loves Him (v. 9); to remain in His love (v.9); that if we remain in His love, we will obey His commands (v.10); we are to love each other as He has loved us (v.12); the greatest love is laying down one’s life for a friend (13); Jesus says that His command is that we love one another. Notice the love connection is not just with Jesus, but with others. We are to love each other. In loving each other, we need to be socially connected to one another, do things together (e.g., life groups, ministry, church, meals). Jesus is telling us all of this for our benefit. He wants our joy to be made full. A recent research review, published in Nature Neuroscience, suggests that social disconnection may be processed in the brain in the same way as the threat of physical harm. The brain responds to threat of a broken relationship or social disconnection by activating a basic ‘alarm system’.

This alarm system sets in motion a range of neurophysiological processes that are the same, whether the threat is physical and in the environment, or perceived and based on individual judgment of a threat to social connectedness. What happens when this alarm system is activated? The sympathetic nervous system goes into overdrive, increasing inflammation, compromising the immune system and contributing to many diseases such as diabetes, aging and cancer.

On the other hand, how does social connectedness improve health? Research shows that being socially connected activates basic reward-related circuits that are also activated when learning to respond to beneficial environmental cues. Belonging and feeling cared for are critical to good health.

Jesus says that His command is that we love one another. Notice the love connection is not just with Jesus, but with others. We are to love each other.

Respond: Are you feeling unloved or socially disconnected from other Christ followers? Jesus loves you and His heart’s desire is to see you connected for your emotional, spiritual and physical well-being. Take a moment and ask Jesus to help you feel His love and find ways to connect with others. Newbreak offers a lot of opportunity for you to be connected and in loving relationship with others. We center this around three B’s.

• Begin your week in worship – in other words, at church. Watching on line is fine when you are sick or out of town, but otherwise, you need to be present in church with other people (Hebrews 10:25).

• Belong to a life group (Acts 17:11). This is a place where you can be known and know others, be loved and love others, celebrate and be celebrated, grow and help others grow.

• Be the church by serving (Hebrews 6:10). There are a lot of opportunities each month to join a team of people doing community outreaches. It’s a great place to get to know others.

Another way you can serve is to do something in ministry. There are many options available to you: e.g., greeting and/or assisting people at church; preparing for various aspects of the weekly service; helping children; serving at community events; hosting or leading a life group. Ask your Campus Director or go to the information booth to get help on connecting in a group, ministry or outreach. Pray and ask Jesus how and where you can get connected. It is vital to your life.

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Day 2: Jesus’ Triumphant Entry

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Day 3: Jesus Predicts His Death

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Day 4: Jesus Sees Their Unbelief

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Day 5: Jesus Speaks to the Crowd

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Day 6: Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet

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Day 7: Jesus Predicts His Betrayal

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Day 8: Jesus Declares a New Command

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Day 9: Jesus Doesn’t Want Your Heart to be Troubled

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Day 10: Jesus Is the Way, the Truth, and the Life

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Day 11: Jesus Is In Father

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Day 12: Jesus Is Not Leaving You as an Orphan

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Day 13: Jesus Is In You

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Day 14: Jesus Has a Gift For You

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Day 15: Jesus Is Coming Back

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Day 16: Jesus Is Your Vine

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Day 17: Jesus Is In Love with You

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Day 18: Jesus Is Hated

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Day 19: Jesus Is Depending on You

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Day 20: Jesus Is Warning Us

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Day 21: Jesus says, “I am Going Away”

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Day 22: Jesus Is Leaving You a Guide

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Day 23: Jesus Turns Our Sadness into Joy

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Day 24: Jesus Is from God

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Day 25: Jesus Has Overcome the World

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Day 26: Jesus Is Praying For Himself

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Day 27: Jesus Is Praying For His Followers

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Day 28: Jesus Is Praying For You

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Day 29: Jesus’ Night Of Terror

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Day 30: Jesus Had Predicted Peter’s Denial

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Day 31: Jesus is Speaking The Truth

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Day 32: Jesus Heard The Rooster’s Crow

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Day 33: Jesus Before Pilate

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Day 34: Jesus Hears “Crucify Your King.”

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Day 35: Jesus Is Crucified

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Day 36: Jesus, King Of The Jews

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Day 37: Jesus Said, “It Is Finished.”

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Day 38: Jesus Leaves An Empty Tomb

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Day 39: Jesus Appears To The Disciples

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