I would like to introduce a four-part blog series that I will deliver over the next four days. I am taking my title from Mark 12:30 and I am going to unpack the verse talking about what it means to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. I am praying that it will be a blessing to you.
And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength
Part 1: How to love the Lord with all you Heart
According to the Bible, the heart is the center not only of spiritual activity, but of all the operations of human life. Proverbs 4:23 calls it the “wellspring of life.”
The heart is also the seat of the conscience (Romans 2:15). It is naturally wicked (Genesis 8:21), and has the potential to contaminate life and character (Matthew 12:34; 15:18. Therefore, if the heart must love God fully and completely, a few things must take place:
- The heart must experience regeneration (Ezek. 36:26; 11:19; Psalms 51:10-14). Before a man can really love God with all his heart, he must experience the new birth.
- The heart must jealously and diligently be guarded from being won over to other affections and distractions. For if he loves the world, the love of the father is not in him.
- One must also devote his heart unconditionally to the Lord, for he cannot have two masters at the same time. He can only be devoted to one.
Deuteronomy 6:4, 5 tells us:
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might
This a call to love and be devoted to the Lord and Him alone. This is a freedom call from idols. I have visited different parts of the world where you can see and touch some of the idols people worship and revere. But, idols are not just so-called gods and statutes we can see, feel or touch. They are things we love more than we love God. Things that take first place in our lives, things we worship and adore more than the love and adoration we have for the Lord.
I urge you today, on this first day of the year to put God first in your life and through his power decide to keep it that way for the rest of the year. This kind of commitment means you will have to give up a lot of things you’ve allowed to take first place in your life. So get ready for a battle.
Let’s start with the things that are most pleasurable to you:
- Get out of that relationship. Make sexual purity your goal this year.
- Stop watching porn… make yourself accountable to someone. If you really want to get back on track, the only kind of movies you can watch this year are those rated PG. I know you are screaming, what? But yeah, PG.
- Get out of the clubs. Avoid drunken, sensual, parties and gatherings. Do something better with your time, read, go to church, youth groups, small groups.
- Find some other forms of entertainment with godly friends. Maybe it is time to hang with some new friends.
- Get into the word. It is not yet late to start attending bible studies or accountability groups. Get connected to a church and in a church.
Here is an opportunity to everything you have in this relationship with the master. All In! Are you ready? Your heart is what God is after in 2012.