I was reading the Bible recently, when I came across a verse that I had read a hundred times but this time, made me stop in my tracks. It read: "'Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and 'Love your neighbor as yourself'" (Luke 10:27). Though I've grew up hearing this verse it made pause and ask myself: am I doing this? What exactly does it mean to love God with all of my heart, soul, strength, and mind?
In Luke 11, Jesus admonishes the religious rulers of the day, saying that though they are "clean" and righteous on the outside they are greedy and wicked within. They tithe but they neglect justice and the love of God. While I'd like to believe that I'm not as bad as the religious rulers of that day, I do know that I am a sinner and that while I love God, there is room for that love to grow.
Paul explains in 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 that: "if I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing". Yes, Jesus wants us to serve, to use our gifts and to follow Him... but that's only going to happen when we love like Luke 10:27 describes it. When we are focused on Him.
I started to meditate on Luke 10:27 because I want that to be the desire of my heart. I don't just want to love God, I want to love God with every fiber in my being! I love Him now and I know that He loves me, but this verse is love for God on a whole other level and it's something that needs to wake us up! It's the greatest commandment after all?! I don't think we as Christians always fully grasp that... I have an inclination that a lot of us would say, "I like God but I'm not in love with Him". Brothers and sisters this should not be! We should be so consumed with God - with all of our mind, body, heart, and soul - with everything that we are. We can only love the Lord our God with all of our heart, strength, soul, and mind when we spend time with Him daily and meditate on His word. Its by spending time with him, talking with him, and listening to him that we will grow in our relationship with Him - falling more and more in love with Him.
In the process of meditating on this verse I did an exercise where I walked through the verse and looked up the definitions of some of the words: strength, mind, heart, and soul. I then considered how I could love God with all of my heart, with all of my soul, etc. - what that means. It was a wonderful exercise! I encourage you to do it.
Photography: Andi & Zoe Photography | Styling: Anna Beth Eskridge
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