Luke 10:27 He answered ‘Love the Lord your God with all you heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind and, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’.
Love is an interesting concept isn’t it? In our world we speak of love as something romantic, something that makes us feel fuzzy and warm inside. Love is expressed in ways of needing others and by meeting that need through our relationships. It is something we all crave but it something near impossible for us to do.
Well actually it is super easy for us to do, it is what we do every day of our lives; the essence of our being is to love. Unfortunately for humanity this is directed in the wrong places.
Many of us struggle with low self-esteem; we feel inferior to others and others seem to relish in their power over us. Our solution to this is to try and love ourselves. The media and our world view both encourages and advocates this principle ‘Find your me time’ ‘If others don’t love you it’s because you don’t love yourself enough’ ‘Once you love and accept yourself others will love you too’ ‘those who don’t love you, well it’s their loss’.
However, our bible verse and much of the bible says love isn’t the problem; it is the misdirection of love that is the problem. What we actually need is a moment of reorientation; we need God to intervene into this misunderstood moment in our lives.
As always God turns our broken, mixed up world upside down; the truth is God is turning our world the right way up, the way we were meant to be, the way he originally planned for humanity to love.
The reason we love, the reason why love is on the agenda is because God is love, we are the product of God’s love, we are created in his image therefore in us is love.
The problem is we first and foremost love ourselves. We expect it, we demand it, we fight for it, we hate it when we don’t get it and we hate others for not giving it to us.
The solution to our love problem is to love God first. Mmm that’s hard for our hardened broken hearts to hear, its hard for our self-focused hearts to even want to consider. But God doesn’t stop there, we are not only to love God first but we are to love him with every ounce of our being. Oh no we cry out, is that really possible? Well you are right to worry because it is impossible for us to love as we are meant to love.
So why would God expect us to love him so fully if it is impossible for us to do that?
Our ability to love God comes from the fact that first and foremost God loved us first. One of the most famous verses in the bible tells us ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life’ John 3:16.
The direction of our love begins with our love for God because the direction of his love began with his Son the Lord Jesus and because of his son God’s love is extended to us. You see held within these words are the power of God’s love. God expressed his love for humanity in his sacrificial giving of His Son to live as humanity and to take humanity’s rightful place on the cross of judgement because humanity behaved as if they were God, as if they”re the sole focus of love.
In our demand to be loved we are saying we are God, we should be the focus of everyone else’s love, we expect others to serve and worship us.
In our desire to love ourselves; to find our me time, we are declaring that God must fit into our view of who He is rather than us fit into His view of who we are. The only solution is to accept God’s Son who declares God is Sovereign over our lives and He alone is worthy to be worshipped and glorified.