I’ve been thinking about Jesus’ response to the Pharisee’s question, “What is the greatest commandment in the law?”. His response, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
I like the message translation for fresh insight: Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.”
Lydia wrote a paper about someone she admires. She chose me! I cried. I didn’t think she listened. I didn’t know she was watching. What was a bit surprising to me were the things she didn’t mention. There wasn’t anything in the paper about me being a stay-at-home mom and a kid chauffeur. My meals weren’t mentioned. The state of our house or the clothes in her closet. . . . none of the things I do for her were mentioned. . . not one. She shared about how I’d baked for church, helped with class parties and field trips and ministered to women at the pregnancy center I volunteer at. She told a story I shared with her about how I’d prayed with a young woman as she chose to trust Jesus.
I think I get off track a lot. I get concerned, especially when I begin to make comparisons to other moms, that I’m not doing enough for my girls. I’m not an ambitious housekeeper, I’m disorganized and tired! I worry about the girls’ grades, activities, how many books they read. . . . the list can go on and on.
There must be something innate in all of us that understands and bears witness to the two greatest commandments, Love God, Love People. That is why we exist. The things that Lydia admired about me fell in these two categories. She noticed the times when I served people. That is what I need to be focusing on!
I’m reading a book that encourages living a good story. The author spoke to a father upset about his teenage daughter’s hidden pot and disrespectful, bad boy boyfriend. He commented that she wasn’t living a good story. After talking, her father realized he wasn’t giving her a good story to experience at home and she was out looking for the best story she could find. He decided to join an organization that builds orphanages around the world. He volunteered his family to build one even though they were broke, knowing that a good story involves risk. In just a few days time, his daughter began to get excited and asked to go to Mexico. It wasn’t long and she ditched the boyfriend. Her father gave her a better, more exciting story to live. He said, “No girl who plays the role of a hero dates a guy who uses her”.
Loving God and serving others is the best example we can give.
Our families are watching!