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.’” Luke 10:27 NIV
What Does It Look Like to be Without Strength?
You are challenged to love the Lord your God with ALL your strength. What does it mean to love God with all your strength? Perhaps that question is best answered in what it looks like to love someone without strength. It can be hard to love others. We get weak and slip up. We aren’t determined. We don’t act loving and kind, especially when those we love aren’t behaving as we desire. We treat unkindness, or what we perceive as unkindness, with unkindness. We treat others the way they treat us instead of the way we want to be treated. Why do we do this? Because we aren’t strong. Our weakness shows through.
So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12 NIV
How is Loving God Different?
The difference in loving humans and loving God is that God won’t fail us. He will never do anything to harm us.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.” Jeremiah 29:11-12
Unfortunately we don’t always perceive it this way. When we have to wait on God, we aren’t often patient. We are ready for an answer NOW. We don’t perceive God’s silence as his loving kindness and preparation for what is to come. We lose our strength. Our love often grows weaker. Our prayer lives and Bible study time might start to slip. Our faith might waiver.
How Can We Remain Strong?
We have to remain strong. God commanded it in Luke 10:27! But how can we remain strong when it feels like life is zapping all of our strength? This is by no means an all encompassing list, but here are some suggestions that are also great to model with your children…
- Keep a journal of answered prayers. Remember all the times God has been faithful to you in the past.
- Stay in God’s word, even when you don’t feel like it.
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” Romans 10:17 ESV
- Pray and ask others to pray for you. It’s okay to be honest and admit to God that you are wavering in your faith.
And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:12 ESV
Does Anyone Really Love God with All Their Strength?
I’m sure you have heard the saying, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” Each time we come out on the other side of a negative experience, you are stronger. We don’t get bulging muscles the very night that we have decided to workout. Spiritual muscles work the same way. We have to love God with ALL our strength. Maybe you don’t have much strength to work with yet. That’s okay. Just give it all you’ve got. Your spiritual muscles will get bigger with time. Eventually your all will be much bigger than your all is right now. Now go exercise those spiritual muscles!
What area do you want to be stronger in? Do you have a plan to get stronger?
***If you desire to be stronger in the area of health, and conversely desire to have more energy and stamina to serve God, don’t forget to check out The January edition of the 2016 Book Brigade. Tuesday nights in January at 8pm CST we will be discussing Trim Healthy Mama Plan: The Easy-Does-It Approach to Vibrant Health and a Slim Waistline live on Periscope. I would love to have you join us! If you can’t, please catch the replays!
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