People are looking for life. Many people are existing as the go through the motions of each day, but they are longing for something more. That is why Jesus’ promise found in John 10:10 of abundant life is so appealing. The problem is that for most Christians life seems to be anything but abundant. Part of this is because we have forgotten that there is an enemy who is out to steal, kill, and destroy our lives, but it is also do to not understand what life is about. Life isn’t primarily about purpose or even significance. Life is primarily about love. No wonder Jesus said that the great commands that are to guide our lives are about love.
37 Jesus said to him, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the greatest and most important commandment. 39 The second is like it: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:37-40; ISV)
Heart of abundant life, eternal life, is love. If we are not loving other people, then we are not really living. If you are wondering how to really live life, perhaps you need to consider how to love the people around you.
I believe experience shows us that love and life are tied together. Ask yourself this question: When have I felt the most alive?
One time I felt alive was the summer of 2004. It was early July and I and 25 other people traveled from western Illinois to northern Arizona to a Navajo Indian reservation. It was shocking to see the extreme poverty that existed there. Our group spent five days painting houses and doing some minor repair on houses for people who could not afford to have it done. I also had the added privilege of being able to teach the kids and the sponsors who went along on the trip. I remember thinking: this is what life is all about!
When we love, whether it is serving those in need, doing something nice for a friend, or spending time with our families, are the times when we will feel the most alive. Those are the experiences that will have us saying: this is what life is all about!
Have you ever had that feeling? I hope that you have, because I believe that it gives us insight into what real true abundant life is all about. It is about love. Not love that is just spoken or felt, but love that is acted upon and shown. With out love there is no life in us.
That is the great truth that I want you to take away this series of ponderings: Love is the lifeblood of eternal life. It is how we maintain the life given to us by Jesus, and it is how we share that life with other people.
God has loved us and the result has been life. He has instructed us to love other people. Why does God want us to love? One of the purposes of the command to love others is so that they too might have life. Are you ready to love?
- Point to Ponder: If we are not loving other people, then we are not really living.
- Passage to Remember: Matthew 22:37-40
- Question to Consider: When have you felt the most alive?