To live is to love, which is, to know. The innate desire to be known and loved resides within us all. If we are familiar with the words of Christ, this shouldn’t surprise us:
“And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing
with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which
commandment is the most important of all?”
Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O
Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall
love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with your
entire mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘You
shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater
than these” (Mark 12:28-31 ESV).
Humans were made to love; this is our purpose: to love Christ with the entirety of our being and then to love others because each person is created in the image of Him.
Love is purposeful. To love someone is to know them, and in order to know someone you must become a student of that person. A deepening love for Christ requires us to become eager students of Him, posturing ourselves at His feet, learning to find satisfaction in savouring the glorious truths of Calvary.
To learn is to listen. The words of Christ are Scripture. To know Christ is to know His Word. Oh God, give us unquenchable thirsts, causing us to drench ourselves in the waters of your words everyday. Instil in our hearts an insatiable desire to know you more and more, never growing weary of learning about you.
The closer we position ourselves towards Christ, the brighter His brilliance will shine upon our lives, illuminating for us what is important in this life and what we were created for. This life is a piece of the eternal life for which we are headed; in His presence, we experience the fullness of joy.
Loving Christ should cause us to live to love others. It’s not an option; it’s a command.
Loving others is active and purposeful. Consistent action must have a reason. We have a reason. Christ commanded us. He created us and knows the intricacies of our human heart. However, we must remember the order of love, lest we attempt to love by our own strength. Love HIM, and then love others. He knows that loving Him and filling ourselves with His presence will enable us to outpour genuine love into the lives of other people. This is what we were created for.
How to love others authentically:
Love Christ with your heart, mind, and soul. By knowing Him and loving Him, you will learn to love what He loves, and He loves His people.
Learn about others. Be a keen student of the people God has placed in your life. Ask questions. Inquire about their interests, hopes, and dreams. Encourage them in these things.
Listen. Be attentive to what they are saying. Remember their words. Write them down to help you.
Serve. Identify ways in which you can serve someone. In serving someone, you become more connected to that person and their journey in this life.
Pray. By upholding someone’s name in the light of our Heavenly Father, you will see that person clearly for who they are, a child of Christ, beloved by Him.
Which individuals in your life will you purpose to love in this upcoming week?