Strong spirits: do you love him?

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Photo: Nicola Barts, Pexels

How do we know if we love someone? Not by those good feelings we have whenever they are around - although those can be nice. The way we know we love them is that we put them first; we care about their needs; we do what we know they will like; we put their interests ahead of our own.

How can we know if we love God? Same answer! We put him first. We do what will please him. We submit to him and joyfully do what he requires.

"Jesus said to Simon Peter, 'Simon son of John, do you love me?' 'Yes Lord,' he said, 'you know that I love you.' Jesus said, 'Feed my lambs.'" Jesus speaking to Peter (John 21:15)

"If you love me, keep my commands." Jesus to his disciples (John 14:15) 

It isn't how we feel about God that matters. It's that we willingly submit to him, and joyfully do whatever he asks of us. And what does he ask of us? To love God most of all, and our neighbor as ourselves.

So... do you love him?

Gary Schwerin serves as pastor at Caledonia Congregational Church. He is also the Spiritual Development Minister for the YMCA of the Rock River Valley and Executive Director of Bridge Ministries of Rockford. Prior to launching Bridge Ministries, Gary spent many years in leadership with Young Life. His columns appear here every Sunday - to see them all, subscribe to our daily email.

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