1. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.
2. Love your neighbor as yourself.
Matthew 22:37-39, Mark 12:30-31, Luke 10:27
To God, love is effortless. Jesus came and demonstrated that effortless love as He cared for the poor, the weak, criminals, prostitutes, widows and sinners alike, and then as he sacrificed Himself on the cross for the sins and sinners of the world. For us, though, love requires effort, intentionality, humility, compassion and grace. Sometimes it can feel effortless to love someone. Some people are just easy to love! Yet other times it can feel impossible because all we see are the faults in others, the injustices and carelessness that they bring, and their lack of compassion and empathy. However, when you look at someone through the lens of God's love, suddenly the impossible is effortless.
This is my goal: to love as effortlessly as God loves. It's a pretty big goal and one that I will be working toward my whole life. I know that I will never quite reach that level of effortlessness, but I do know that everyone on this earth is deserving of that love and is a candidate for God's healing and transformation. For that, I will keep pressing on. Loving others is on me - it's on you - we do not need to wait for someone to be worthy of that love according to our own appraisal. Instead, we love - no strings attached - as God loves us.
"Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children 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."