Be Thou and Thou only the first in my heart,
O Sovereign of Heaven, my treasure Thou art.
Jesus said to him, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” (Matt. 22:37)
The great commandment. To understand love is to behold the Author, the very definition of love. For God so loved that He gave. To love is to give. To love is to suffer. Why did He love? Why did He suffer? To make possible a relationship with His greatest treasure—mankind. A relationship both now and forevermore. For this He paid the ultimate price. Who is “the LORD your God?” Creator and sustainer. All-wise, all-powerful, all-knowing. To love the LORD with all one’s heart, soul, and mind is to give, to suffer, to become a jewel in His crown; the One to Whom all honor, respect, and majesty is due. God created man in His image: spirit, soul, body. It is with man’s heart, soul, and mind that he is commanded to love Him who holds absolute ownership rights over His creation. Man’s heart, center of spiritual activity; his soul, essence of who he is; his mind acting on acquired information. Jesus takes a holistic view of the inner person—thoughts, will, choices. It is with man’s inner person that he is to serve God. Left to itself, it tends in the opposite direction.
God, who is love, imparts His nature to those who are in Christ. Is it not reasonable to direct our entire being toward Him? When we love something, we are, in a way, united with the object of our love, giving it a sort of power over us. If money, it is a greedy love. If things, it is an earthly love, if sensual, it is a carnal love. Only a love of God produces a righteous love for others—a love that gives and suffers for the beloved. A new mother understands what it is to love with all that is within her when she holds her newborn baby. Her heart, thoughts, will, emotions—life itself—revolves around her baby. She gave and will give of herself for her child; she suffered and will suffer for her precious child.
Are you endeavoring to live your life united to God? Actions reflect the state of your inner person. Paul implies that God is served with the mind (Ro. 7:23). It is the mind that wants to steer you back to what is familiar, the old habits and thought processes. But you can make it your goal to love as He loves when you aim to live in accordance with the greatest commandment in the Law. Let today’s prayer be to heed this great commandment: “Be Thou and Thou only the first in my heart, O Sovereign of Heaven, my treasure Thou art.”