Loving God is Not a Formula


“O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together.”  Psalm 34:3

No matter how much I’ve studied the Bible, never have I found  anything leading me to believe God’s greatest command to love Him with all our hearts (Mark 12:30) comes with a set formula. Never have I seen Him mention a calendar, schedule, protocol, agenda, long-term or short-term plan, exact number of hours, minutes, seconds per day to spend with Him, checklist, compartment of our lives in which to keep Him, compartments of our lives to keep Him out of, checklist, template, or formula. Yet how many who profess to love the Lord have done this, if we profess to love Him at all? Is it possible those of us who have fallen into trying to fit loving God into a formula have not only fallen terribly far short of loving God and have fallen sadly far short of reaping the rewards of loving God have also turned off others from loving Him because of our rigid fleshly formulas? Have we so reduced ourselves to living according to the world’s ways, which are riddled with our jam-packed-busy-squeeze-everything-in-as-best-we-can-to-climb-our-corporate-ladders-and-fulfill-our-own-agendas lives or for others to do-nothing-at-all-for-anyone-but-us-and-perhaps-have-too-much-time-on-our-hands-or-no-time-at-all-because-we’re-too-busy-indulging-ourselves-with-the-sin-of-the-hour, that God is just another item on our To-Do list if He’s on it at all?

For decades, I didn’t know God. Then I came to know Him. I professed to love Him. But He was nothing more in my mind than a far-away God whom I had to diligently, obediently fit somewhere into my day. I had an agenda. I kept Him confined to a little forced time in the morning, a few sprinkles of God throughout the day, then a tad of God before bedtime. The rest of the time was mine, I thought. But God kept drawing me closer to Himself, stirring up in me a hunger and a thirst for Him and righteousness, for His Word and to know Him, intimately, ever more intimately, the more hunger and thirst the more seeking Him, the more seeking Him the more knowing Him, the more knowing Him the more loving Him. Now God is my everything. No more is He a piece of my calendar with a set agenda of how to spend time with Him. I love and seek Him day and night, I talk to and listen to Him throughout my days, and even in the night hours, I dig into His Word, deep, I crave more of Him, I don’t confine Him to a time and method of loving Him. I open wide my heart and arms and come running to Him, falling ever more in love with Him. True love at long last. Truly loving God forever.

As you meditate on God’s Word, consider all the ways people loved, praised, and worshiped Him. How has God called you to love and worship Him?

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