Devotional Reading: I John 5: 1-12
Text: For the love of God is this, that we obey His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. (v.3)
Love is not an emotion or a feeling. Emotion and feeling are passion. Love is a decision; a willful decision that calls us to do a thing even when we do not feel like doing it. I remember a particularly low point in my life and reading Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking. At some point in the book he said that if we do the loving thing even when we do not feel like it, we will begin to feel loving. Feeling follows action, or, As James Allen wrote in his classic book As a Man Thinketh: “As a man thinketh so he becometh.”
Love is hard. It is not doing the easy thing or, necessarily, the thing that the person wants you to do. It is doing the right thing. It means that you may have to say “No.” Love means being misunderstood or being unappreciated. It means that you do not always get the credit you deserve or want. It means that at times you will be misunderstood or even hated. But you do the loving thing anyway.
Jesus gave only one commandment in His life–that His disciples love one another as He loved them. It would be by this that others would know who He was and is. His Way of love is not easy but neither is it burdensome. It is Truth and Life, real Life.
I believe that Love takes wisdom and thought and commitment. It is a decision, an action and a way of being. It is the only way to have a sense of fulfillment and purpose for it is the path to living a meaningful life.
Lord, give me the wisdom and courage to love with Your love. Amen.*
*You may also want to refer to a prayer attributed to the late Mother Teresa. http://prayerfoundation.org/mother_teresa_do_it_anyway.htm