Yesterday seemed to be an incredibly long day. Obviously it was no longer than any other day in terms of minutes and hours. But with a guest in our home and a team of guys working on building a training center in the area beneath our back patio, it means we had very little time to ourselves. So when the final car pulled out of the gate, I collapsed on the couch, closed my eyes briefly, and questioned everything. “What am I doing?” “Why on earth am I causing more work for myself?” “Where is God in all of this?” “Have I made a mistake?” “What is wrong with me?”
Questions like that at the end of the day are best left unanswered. They are the result of fatigue and a faith that questions if God will fulfill His promise to never leave or forsake me. In the morning, those questions fade with the mist and the work begins again. The excitement and faith return. His mercies are new.
So when I poured my coffee and looked at His Word, I found myself meditating on a single phrase that I hope to be preaching on in a few weeks: “love the Lord.”
A simple, impossible command.
How do I — a sinner! — choose Him for an intimate relationship, and commit to obey His commands? How do I — a sinner! — incline my heart to the One who inclined Himself to me? How do I — a sinner! — follow Him in faith, forsaking the path that my wayward heart would take me on?
Jesus said it was the Greatest Commandment. Yet daily I’m certain of my failure to obey it. But perhaps that’s the entire point. In my failure I become more dependent on Him. And once I rest in that dependence, all I can “do” is whatever God puts in front of me. If He calls me to give my home to helping others, then that’s what I’ll do. And I’ll do it as imperfectly as I do everything else. I’ll do it needing His grace every step of the way.
I know I’ll never in this life love Him like He loves me. But I’m going to keep trying, and failing, and trying again.
Because He first loved me.