The Greatest Answer

LoveWe have an amazing ability to limit the boundaries of love! We define it and hover at the surface of that meaning. We put it in a box, carry it around with us, instead of showing people what it really is or looks like. We only crack the lid to reveal a peek and give them our best description of it. But truly, our description is only how we see it. Our concept of love is only a faint echo is its true significance. It is the greatest answer, not just for our fellow-man, but for ourselves as well. Its reach is beyond our understanding. Its motivations are all around us. Love’s definition is far greater than the due it’s been given.

So what is love?

I can’t fully answer this, but maybe I can shed a little light on the box I’m carrying around. Love was Jesus’ answer when the Pharisees asked Him about the greatest commandment. In Matthew 22:36-40 it says “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Love is the center of both of these commandments. So if the greatest command is to “love”, there has to be more to it than just some words. I believe that we encounter love on many different levels, our response to and from it varies as well. Love can be hollow and void of feeling if it is only verbalized. Sure we enjoy the warmth of someone saying “I love you”, we’re even comforted by someone saying that they “love” our cooking, our hair, our talent, our clothes, our car, our home…. What are they but words if not followed with a conscious behavior.

Next, I have to ask, how do I love?

My command is to love God and love my neighbor, ok… so how? How can I take this most important of a directive and utilize it how God has intended me to? For me, when I think about “love”, there are so many things that come to mind. We have degrees of intensity for love and multiple ways we show it. What I’d like to share is what I feel some of us pick up on, but most of humanity and society is missing when it comes down to it. And when it comes down to it, how I love has everything to do with how I live, it’s what I share, it’s how I communicate, it’s what I believe, what I let in, and what comes out. So I can exude love or I can avoid it. That choice will positively or negatively affect everything I come in contact with.

Love is..

First and foremost, it’s the example my God and Sovereign Father laid out before us

Love is..

That God sent His Son to die on a cross to take my place (1 John 4:9) And that Christ came knowing He would give His life to redeem mine

Love is..

That before the foundation of this Earth was laid, God knew me and chose me (Ephesians 1:4)

Love is..

With all my heart, following Him/ With all my soul, seeking Him/ With all my mind, dwelling on Him

Love is..

Reaching out to His kingdom, helping the needy, feeding the hungry, and clothing the poor

Love is..

Trusting His Word, preparing the way for others to find His promises, and sharing the Gospel with the lost

Love is..

Giving God my attention, my time, my family, my finances, and my life

Love is..

Respecting those He has placed in my life, pouring truth into them, and speaking blessing into them

Love is..

Honoring my wife, lifting her up, and fulfilling my vows to her

Love is..

Raising my children to know and serve our God by being the example so they don’t stray from it

Love is..

Cherishing my family, hugging them, kissing them, spending time with them

Love is..

Protecting the ones I care for, giving them security and providing for them

Love is..

Taking correction and giving correction, holding others accountable and being held accountable

Love is..

Saying no when it’s called for and yes when it’s needed

Love is..

Expecting excellence from yourself and others, but being willing to help and be helped when it’s not achieved

Love is..

Forgiveness, it’s turning the other cheek

Love is..

Listening and speaking

Love is..

Private moments of prayer and worship, and corporate moments as well

Love is..

Patient and kind. It doesn’t envy, boast, or dishonor others. It’s not proud, self-seeking, easily angered, it doesn’t keeps record of wrongs. Love doesn’t delight in evil but rejoices in truth. It always protects, trusts, hopes, and perseveres. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)
Love is..
SO much more….

All these things and more show love, how we can love the Lord our God and love our neighbor. Know that “Love” is a noun, it’s a verb, it’s an adjective. It is the Greatest Answer for the world around us today. There is a massive need and demand for it, but not enough people spreading it. What is love to you? Hopefully our meanings aren’t too far apart. You may have a thing or two to add to it, but let’s stop talking about it and start practicing it!

Love (What do you know… it’s a valediction as well),

Zack

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “The Greatest Answer

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s