Wow. Paul wrote those words to the church in the book of Philippians. Reading between the lines it appears there is a sense of frustration in it. In chpt 2 he said
"If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care, then do me a favour: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand"
The killer line for me was "IF HIS LOVE HAS MADE ANY DIFFERENCE IN YOUR LIFE....." then he goes on to explain what it should look like if Gods love has made any difference in your life. I guess his point is this - You, and everyone else around you, will know the depth of your encounter with God / maturity / "spirituality" or whatever expression you care for, by this - your love. It's not about your words, your critical judgements of others, what books you read or whatever. The true test is how much love there is.
It is simply about your love. Your selfless commitment to someone else's best. In what you say about them, what you wish for them, what you do for them.
Let me draw out 2 simple truths - Firstly this tells us that it is possible to read, listen, talk about God, Jesus and all of the truths about the Kingdom and it not make a blind bit of difference to your life. Wow. God's love might not make any difference to your life. Hearing is not enough. This kingdom is a heart kingdom and transformation does not happen just because you "know" the principles - it happens when those truths penetrate your heart. How do you know that has happened? You love people. In fact you love people and they see it. Your circle may not be the best people to help you with that. What about the people that you disagree with? The people who, and as Christians we are not always honest about this, you really do not like never mind love? A "community of the spirit" is everyone who is in Christ - not your mates.
Secondly "do me a favour" reinforces that this is a choice. It suggests that this is down to you. You get to choose love. That is your responsibility. Other people may harm you. You may sit in critical judgement of them and their behaviour and that is your choice to do so. Gods love has freed you from that kind of living. Danny Silk describes it as keeping your love on. Whatever way you put it you have to choose to love.
It would be very easy to point the finger at this point. We all are tempted that way. But do yourself a favour today - let the love of God in. Choose to prefer in every way. Have a look at your love and allow the Spirit of God to challenge and change you.
Keep your love on.