Wednesday, March 14, 2018

It is an ALL-Inclusive thing!

You must love him with all your heart, soul, and might. And you must think constantly about these commandments I am giving you today. You must teach them to your children and talk about them when you are at home or out for a walk; at bedtime and the first thing in the morning. Tie them on your finger, wear them on your forehead, and write them on the doorposts of your house! (Deuteronomy 6:5-9 TLB)

There are those of us who may postulate the hardest part of loving the Lord with ALL our heart is obeying him. I think it might just be the hardest part of loving the Lord this way is for our 'self' to get out of the way long enough to actually let God connect with our hearts! Pride keeps us at arm's length - shame helps us put up a good front - 'image' drives us to 'religious expression' instead of relationship. Indeed, to get close enough to love God and serve him with ALL requires a whole lot of other stuff in our lives to get out of the way!

I didn't realize I had some really good salvageable wood in my 'pallet pile' until I took some time to actually pull out about 8-10 of those pallets yesterday and start examining what I had. The more I pulled, the more that was exposed. The same happens with our relationship with Christ - the more we are pulled toward him, the more of us gets exposed - but...that applies to Christ, as well. The more we are drawn to him, the more of him we get to know! As Moses was delivering the commandments to the nation of Israel that day, I don't imagine he knew the total 'cost' of loving God in such a manner, but it didn't dampen his enthusiasm one bit.

We often want to know the cost up front - almost as though we were shopping for a new car. We don't want any 'hidden' costs. I think that might just be what Moses had in mind when he spoke these words - there is really no other meaning to ALL than ALL! It was pretty plain - the Word is to affect us deeply, be part of our daily lives, and be used to guide both family and business life. It was to be reverenced, obeyed, heeded, and trusted. It was to fill our conversation, but not just as 'passing commentary'. It was to be that which lent clarity, direction, and encouragement.

Coming - going. Working - playing. God didn't 'carve out' any hidden costs here. He was pretty plain - ALL of us needs to connect with ALL of him - keeping his Word in the forefront of all we do. Why is his Word so important? Perhaps it is because words connect us - they are the foundation of relationship. Yes, there are other 'actions' that occur in relationship, but without communication, we dry up and aren't really going to remain vitally connected. The emphasis on his Word being central in our lives is tied to us being able to live for him with our ALL. The ALL-inclusive plan of God is revealed in his Word! Just sayin!