Let’s unwrap the theme of loving others…
Could it be that loving God without reservation will help you love yourself and others more? I know this sounds pretty preposterous, but bear with me as we unwrap this theme of loving others.
The Bible says, “‘To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.’” (Mark 12:33, NIV) Wow! What a wonderful verse, full of secrets.
So let’s talk about loving God with all we have. Mark breaks it down into five crucial dimensions:
- Love God with all your heart. Notice Mark uses the word “agape.” That’s unconditional love. We shouldn’t love God only when He answers our prayers with a yes. We should love Him unconditionally with the core of who we are, our hearts. Do you love Him like this?
- Love God with all of your understanding. Mark uses another specific word: “synesis.” It is the root of the word “synergy.” In other words, we should love Him with all of our reasoning and intellectual powers. Real Christians are called to be intelligent and knowledgeable.
- Love God with all of your soul. The word “psyche” is used here. It’s no mystery that it represents our mind and emotions.
- Love God with all of your strength. This means that you use your voice, body, and resources to demonstrate it.
- Love others as you love yourself. Now this is where it gets messy. We’ve got to agape (love) others as we agape (love) ourselves.
Could it be that loving God with this incredible devotion will, in fact, empower you to love yourself and others? The answer is of course, yes, because love will be the core motivation of our lives, and Christ will be in the center of it. You will love yourself and others unconditionally because He loves you. “And walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” (Ephesians 5:2, NIV)
A powerful song comes to my mind at this moment: “How He Loves,” performed by the David Crowder Band. May His love enable you to love.
Because you’re a miracle.