“Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” [Jesus] said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:36-39
But, wait! There’s more! Those listening would have known that Jesus was quoting from a passage in Deuteronomy 6, which is “Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead, and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” (verses 4-9)
Is it really THAT important to talk about this stuff ALL the time? Yep! It sure is. Have you ever fallen in love? Have you ever thought you might be in love? You wanted to be with your special someone ALL THE TIME! God wants us to love Him like that. Does He love us that much? Yes! Jesus’ death and resurrection is evidence of that.
So, how do you start to live this out? By diving into one of the SF disciple habits — reading your Bible. It’s okay if you start off with big ambitions…starting at Genesis 1:1 and making your way to Revelation 22:21, but it’s not necessary. There are some great devotionals out there that will help you dive into a deeper relationship with God through Jesus. If you’re not sure what you want to start with, ask your friends or even post a question on our Facebook page. Whatever you read daily, think about it throughout the day. Talk with friends about it. Ask questions that the passage brings to mind.
I have read scripture in a variety of ways over the years. I’ve used devotionals. I’ve read all of the footnotes in a couple of different bibles with my readings. I’ve read the bible for class. I’ve done my reading at lunch. I’ve participated and lead lots of bible studies. Currently, I’m using multiple plans on my bible app. In the morning, I am working my way through the bible in a year (with an Old Testament reading, a New Testament reading, a psalm, and a proverb). In the evening, with the whole family, we are saying a psalm (or part of it, if it’s long) as well as using a plan that gives us an overview of the whole bible (it skips repeated parts and all those “begets”).
I want to encourage you today. If you are already digging into the Word, keep going! Don’t be discouraged in rough passages. Share what you are learning. If you’re not in the Word, just start. Start small. Get to know the God of the Universe you loves you so much He sent His one and only Son to die so that you can be in relationship with Him. He is worth getting to know.