Law of Love

“He said to him, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Matthew 22:37-39).

In modern culture, there’s a huge emphasis placed on feelings. Some people make every single decision based on how they feel. The unpopular opinion is that feelings don’t really matter, but we hate to hear that, don’t we?

Jesus experienced human emotion—everything from sadness to anger. He was fully God yet fully man; therefore, He was able to empathize with us. He understands emotion, everything from joy to discouragement. He felt it all, but the difference between Jesus and us is that He made decisions based on truth rather than emotion. Unfortunately, we can’t always say this.

We aren’t robots—we’re going to lose our tempers and we’re going to get upset with people. There’s no denying that Christians, no matter how close we are to God, will experience emotions that can cause us to stumble. What matters is how we respond.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction?” That’s Newton’s third law of motion, but let’s take it and run with it. When someone snaps at you at work, in a store, or at home, that’s an action—what’s your reaction? When your plans in life get interrupted, what’s your reaction? When the Lord decides to test you and you feel like you can’t catch a break, what’s your reaction?

In our previous devotion study, we discussed what our mission is, and we explored the last mandate that the Lord told us, His disciples, in Matthew 28:19 which states, “Therefore go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit…”

We can’t do this if we operate only by how we feel.

If we base every decision on our initial reaction, then our mission will never be fulfilled. Not everybody is going to be friendly about the fact that you are a Christian. Not every person you meet in life is going to be kind and courteous. And while those are the hardest people to love, the Lord says for us to love them anyway. “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Our mission resides in our mandate. A mandate is not a choice—it’s a command. Our Father’s law is a law of love. Love should always be our reaction.

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