DO YOU LOVE ME?
I jumped up from my knees, where I had been kneeling in prayer, listening for the voice of God. Well, there it was!
I wasn't exactly wanting a question as my first audible communication from the Lord, especially with the mess my life seemed to be in. An answer - a positive one, specifically - would have been nice, or even an affirmation. I'd even have accepted an admonishment - at least it would have been straightforward. I would have known just what to do with it, if you will. But instead, I get "Do you love me?"
Of course, it's not like I hadn't "heard from" God before - I'd known he'd led me through His Word, my feelings, friends, and countless other ways in the half-dozen years since I'd become His child. Never before, however, had I felt so certain that God was speaking directly to me. And of all things, he asks me a question.
I'm his child - I must. "Family love" comes naturally, right? Sure, there are times I don't like my folks, or my husband, or my kids, but I ALWAYS love them.
DO YOU LOVE ME?
Hmmm...guess that wasn't what He was looking for.
"LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, ALL YOUR SOUL, AND ALL YOUR STRENGTH." Deuteronomy 6:5 (SO - maybe He didn't "tell me" the reference - but I certainly heard the verse loud and clear!)
Now here's a verse I've known all my life - seems that way anyway! But do I really know what I am being asked to do?
I know how to love with all my heart - that's the whole emotional part of love, right? And loving with my strength, I'd guess, would be showing my love through my actions - making sacrifices that hurt for that love. And those I can say I do, though certainly not perfectly, as far as the Lord is concerned.
But how do I love with all my soul? What does that mean, exactly?
Well, my soul is the spiritual part of me, so it has nothing to do with the physica, and it's not my emotions. My soul, it seems, is what makes me uniquely human - my conscience, my morals, the bit of me that makes me a creature in God's image. When my strength is gone, and my emotions are haywire, I can still have peace - that must be in my soul.
Do I love the Lord with all my soul? Can I trust His love for me, that He is good and knows best, when it seems everything is going wrong, when He doesn't seem to be answering my prayers? Is my soul in sync with the King of Kings?
Say - maybe that wasn't such a bad response to my prayer after all!
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