TUESDAY: LOVE by Nathan Hurlbert

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 22:34-46

In today’s reading Jesus sums up the commandments in one powerful and meaningful sentence: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” In other words, total commitment. All in. No turning back. This is important for many reasons, not least of which is the fact that if we love God this way, our lives can’t help but show His love to the world.

We will then be a light in darkness. By loving God in such a way that our hearts beat as His, our hands work as His and His peace becomes our peace. This will naturally flow over into the second commandment, to love our neighbor as ourselves. I used to hear the words of the second commandment and think literally of neighbor, and while it is most definitely referring to the people living to the left and right of us, it means much more. My neighbor is anyone that I can reach, anyone I can influence with Christ’s love. Your children’s teachers, co-workers, the cashier at the grocery store, the homeless person on the street. This love of neighbor will be the outpouring of yourself, the overflow of the reservoir of your heart that is filled by following and obeying the Greatest Commandment.

By doing this, by wrapping ourselves in the greatest commandment, we are advancing Christ’s kingdom on earth, pushing forward into the empire of darkness of this world. Empires fall in two ways: invasion from outside and sabotage from within. Jesus invaded the empire of Satan and it’s our role to sabotage it from within. By loving the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind we ensure that Christ’s invasion was not done in vain.

PRAYER
God, teach us the things that we are holding back in our total commitment to You.
We want our lives to be lights in the darkness, but we know that this begins in the deepest corners of our hearts.
Fill us with love and continue to pour out Your love in our lives, so that the overflow is evident to those around us.

Josh Kleinfeld