17 March 2021
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37).
Meditating on this command of Jesus has been enriching and challenging. But I discover that applying this in our lives can actually give us the freedom and motivation to meet all the ‘pressure’, ‘tensions’ and ‘struggles’ in life in a way that is not possible otherwise.
Heart, soul and mind are words of overlapping meaning and the command of Jesus can be looked at as ‘loving God with everything we have got’.
It means to live every day of one’s life loving God. It is acknowledging that there is nothing I would not agree to lose or give up if honouring and loving God requires it; it is wanting and valuing our walk and fellowship with God more than I want or value anything else in this world (Psalm 73:25).
It is in fact making knowing and loving and pleasing and praising God my life task and ambition, and seeking to lead and help others into the same direction and pattern of life.
Paradoxically, when we are willing to go through anything and willing to give up everything for God, we find true freedom, peace and joy in Him and in His presence, for God promises us true life and meaning in Him alone, not just for today but for eternity. Making this our passion makes everything else in this world lose its ‘attraction’ and ‘allure’ and increasingly; we find true pleasure and joy in our fellowship with God that transcends everything the world can offer.
But I concur that this is ‘work in progress’ and It still involves ‘struggles’ and daily perseverance as the ‘flesh’ battles the ‘spirit’; but seeing this truth in increasing measures helps in applying it more and more in our lives. In the command of Jesus, it is in reality His desire to free us from self and to find what we are actually created for – to love Him with a pure heart and to find our true meaning and happiness in this process. To deny ourselves is to find our true selves and purpose which God intends for us; it might be painful, very difficult but at the same time it can be truly invigorating and pleasurable – for the end is to find our true humanity God created us for.