When we hear the expression “beloved disciple” we immediately think of John. And I always asked myself, because if he was the beloved disciple, no one made any other expression or comment regarding this? No one else, in any of the other gospels, mentions anything particular about Jesus love for John. John appears in several scenes very close to Jesus and when he writes his epistle, he calls himself the beloved disciple. And, when you look for the story of the crucifixion, you notice that while the rest of the disciples hid out of fear, John showed up there, he did not leave Jesus alone in the most difficult moment.
Then one wonders: Has Jesus shown more love for any of his disciples? Has he had a preference with any of them? I definitely think not. Jesus knew each one of his disciples, he knew what each one was when he called them to walk beside him. He knew their character, their weaknesses, how far they were willing to go for him and what they would do when he was no longer with them on this earth. Jesus was not surprised by anything.
What I do believe is, that John really believed and understood, without a doubt, how much Jesus loved him. The other disciples, quite possibly, could not understand so clearly the immense love of Jesus. John could understand it so clearly that he even named himself the beloved disciple. But, not only did he clearly understand the love of Jesus, but he himself could love Jesus like no other of his disciples loved him. He loved him so much that he accompanied him to his most difficult moment, the cross.
John was the disciple to whom the book of Revelation was revealed, which is nothing but the revelation of Christ himself glorified. The experience of Patmos could only be had by a man who understood love, a man who could know surrender. Such a great revelation could only be given to someone who, above all else, valued and loved Jesus, not for what He could give, but for Jesus, even though He had nothing to offer. And John showed how much he valued and loved Jesus himself.
Perhaps today you and I dream of great things, of great revelations of God, of knowing his dreams and his thoughts, the things that the eye did not see nor the ear have heard. That is why the text clearly states that they are prepared for those who love him (1 Corinthians 2: 9). He who loves Him beyond what He can give you, just as the wife loves the husband. If you love Him and, like John, are willing to accompany Him to the cross, then prepare yourself for great things. Blessings.