Happy new year, everyone! It has been awhile since I have written a new blog post and I apologize for the delay. I am looking forward to another year of learning and growing with all of you. Today, I’m excited to briefly introduce an upcoming series of blog posts. I hope and pray it will be an encouraging series for all of us.
The Importance of Love
As followers of Jesus, there is nothing in the world more important than love. When asked about the most important commandment in the Torah, Jesus answered,
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 22:37-40).
The Apostle Paul explained to his young protege Timothy that the entire goal of his ministry was, “Love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith” (1 Timothy 1:5). He also said this about loving one another:
Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law (Romans 13:8-10).
Jesus teaches us to love our family, our neighbors, and our enemies. There is no one in the world we are not commanded to love and there is no way to overstate the importance of love.
How to Love
That said, I think many of us take for granted that we know how to love. It’s one thing to say, “I love everyone” or “I love my neighbor as myself,” but what does Christian love really look like? What does it mean, in very practical terms, to love someone as Jesus has commanded? Is “love” a self-explanatory concept or does it take instruction and learning to understand how to love others?
I believe many of us do not really know how to love others. I believe we pay lip-service to love, while treating each other with disdain and disrespect. I believe we need to surrender ourselves to the Good News and allow the Spirit to shape us into more loving people.
That’s why I’ve decided to spend a few weeks exploring how to love one another. We will discuss very practical ways to show love towards our family, our neighbors, and our enemies. We will talk about things such as:
- Giving the benefit of the doubt
- Eliminating unspoken expectations
- Bearing one another’s burdens
- Listening to one another
- And more…
I know I need this series. I need to become a better, more loving, follower of Jesus. So, I invite you on this journey with me, to discover what it really looks like to love one another as Jesus has loved us.
I love you and God loves you,