How Do I Really Love God
How Do I Really Love God
We were created to do two things on earth: to love God and to love people. Life is all about love. No one should be satisfied with an “okay” life, just making it by. God has a great plan for every single person, and the key to experiencing that kind of life is understanding how much He loves us and how we can love – really love Him. A.W. Tozier said, “Flowers and bird songs do not make spring; but when spring comes, they come with it.” Love is not an emotion in and of itself, but when we love … obedience comes with it.
How we show love can vary from person-to-person depending on our relationship with them but one thing remains the same; when we love someone, we want to make them happy. Think about it from a different perspective, how do you feel when someone you love disregards your feelings? Your spouse does something they know you don’t like? When your boss ignores your email? When your teen does the very thing at the top of your “don’t” list? When your friend insists on going places they know you don’t like? We feel disregarded, less important, not loved. It’s natural to feel that way because we understand that when we love someone, we want to make them happy. I wonder how God feels when I go my own way, make my own decisions, and do things that I know aren’t in concert with His plan for my life?
The main way that Jesus asked us to express our love for Him was through obedience. This is not to advocate legalism or following rules for the sake of rules. If I tell my toddler not to play in the street, it’s so she doesn’t put herself in danger or get hurt. God doesn’t want to spoil our fun. In fact, He wants us to live a full and awesome life. But, because He loves us, He knows that we are the most satisfied when we trust Him, and we are happiest when we love Him and love others. Obedience to God is an outworking of our love for Him. Because I love Him, I want to make Him happy.
God has given us the capacity to love in our hearts, but love – in and of itself – is not just emotion. Loving God and loving others starts with a decision to go all-in for Him; and, it’s followed with little decisions every day to grow closer to Him by praying, reading our Bible, finding friends who also love Jesus, and doing life together. We have a choice, and that choice happens new every morning and in small choices that we make every day. Even when we mess up, we can keep going and make new decisions that are in tune with what God wants for our lives so we can realize the great destiny He has for each and every one of us. Like the flowers and birds songs come with the spring, obedience comes with love.
Identify one thing you know God wants you to do that you haven’t done. What action can you take now towards obedience?