“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” Deut. 6:4-7
“What do you want me to tell your people?” I asked the Lord. His answer came quickly to my heart. “Tell them to love me.” Not sure if I had truly heard from the Lord? He always speaks in line with His Word. His Word is proof enough from start to finish He had spoken. One day before human-made Valentine’s Day, when so much commercialism and so many people are consumed with loving others. How much of this world, I wonder, is consumed with loving the Lord? How many of us are devoted to the ones we love? How many are devoted to the One we are commanded to love above all and everyone else? To the Lord?
For as long as I can remember, candy makers have sold little Valentine’s Day hearts which include one sweet candy inscribed with “TRUE LOVE”. Is our TRUE LOVE for this world and the things and people in it? Or is our TRUE LOVE for the Lord first? What is TRUE LOVE when it comes to loving God?
As a little girl, twice a year my family and I, being Jewish, attended temple for the holidays. We sang the same prayer every year called Shema Yisrael from Deuteronomy 6 in Hebrew. We didn’t know Hebrew. We didn’t know the prayer in English either. For we didn’t believe in God let alone love Him. We didn’t study the Bible. We didn’t know the Messiah our people looked forward to is Yeshua, Jesus Christ. We loved each other. We loved others. We loved this world. We waited for the next time we would sing the song again. The song about TRUE LOVE. Loving God.
What is TRUE LOVE? It’s not a candy heart. Nor a song in temple. Nor Valentine’s Day roses. But then, nor is it saying we believe in God. Or saying we love Him. Or talking about Him. Or praying to Him. Or going to church and temple. Or reading the Bible. Or calling ourselves Christians and Jews. Or wearing a cross or star of David around our necks. Or saying we believe in Jesus as Lord.
TRUE LOVE is a lifestyle of utter devotion to God, of seeking Him, praising, worshiping, obeying, honoring, serving, and glorifying Him, of living for Him and not for ourselves and this world. We are commanded to love others. But first, we are commanded to love the Lord!