Even experts in the law have questions…
“On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.” ~ Luke 10:25-28
This one life on this one earth is the one thing we have been given for just this one lifetime. Each of us is uniquely supplied with what we’ll need to navigate the storms of our very human life. Ah, but we’re not birthed in finished form. We’re the raw materials of what we will be. Lord, we want to love you perfectly, but our imperfect heart, soul, mind and strength often fail us. What are we missing? What more are we meant to do?
Speaking to the teacher of the law, Jesus made sure he didn’t leave off the last part: “…and love your neighbor as yourself.” That’s the whole of it. Not just obey the laws, but live them out. God has placed us in community with our neighbors to teach us to adopt the spirit of the law and, thus, learn to love as God loves. There’s no instruction manual; it’s more trial and error. Leading by love may look a lot more like chaos.
Yet, out of chaos God ordered creation. God is still ordering God’s creation. We, in our obedience, are working out our salvation in (and as) that creation. Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, Phil 2:12
Fear and trembling are to be expected.
- Even the neatest of people have a messy place, I’m told. This is a place where the odds and ends pile up and we just don’t get around to cleaning it up. What or where is your messy place?
- Today, tackle one such place. Decide what needs keeping, what needs tossing and what needs to go elsewhere for someone else.
- How did the clean-up go? How does that feel?
- Is there a messy place inside you that needs sorting, straightening and perhaps a bit of disposal? For guidance, reflect on 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own, you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your bodies.
Lord, use the workings of my body to show me the mysteries of my soul. Amen.