He answered, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"
I've been think about this, the Greatest Commandment, a lot recently. What does it mean? How do we obey it? How are heart, soul, and mind different?
We get a lot of advice on how to love one's neighbor as one's self, but not a whole lot on how to love God with all our heart, soul, strength, and mind. And, while I was thinking about that, I realized something. I'm fat.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not confined to a chair or anything. Many people would probably not give my weight a second thought. Sure, I look overweight, but in modern America, who notices that? We notice when people aren't far more than we notice when people are. Fat is just how things are, right?
But God recently hit me with the clue-bat. See, I have a family history of diabetes so I happen to know that one of the warning signs is being constantly thirsty, especially when you've been drinking water anyway. And this is where I find myself right now. Which is kind of scary.
But that got me thinking, in light of the Greatest Commandment, how have I been loving God with my strength?
And the answer came back: I'm not.
I will here stipulate that I do not think I can "lift weights for God." I don't think getting ripped like a certain Australian actor in a certain comic book movie about a certain Norse god is the objective.
Nevertheless I am convicted that being fat, unable to climb or descend stairs without breathing heavily, and so out of shape that even thinking of walking down to the park is exhausting is *not* what God intended.
I have already told some that I'm starting on a journey of small steps to a new me. This is a slow life-style change that I hope will get me into better shape. I had decided that before the clue-bat struck.
I want to challenge you to think on the same thing. I'm very cerebrial. I live in my own head a lot. Loving God with my mind is not difficult for me. I'm still not completely sure on the difference between heart and soul, but I find my passion for God growing every day, lately, so I'll chalk that up as a win. But in modern America, with our computers and cell phones and tablets and cars and... well, that whole "strength" thing doesn't mean as much to us anymore.
So I am committing to love God with my strength by first *building* my strength.
How are you loving God with your strength?