Originally published Saturday, 21 June 2014.
Think about this title for a moment. Do you feel the need to draw closer to God today? Do you want to go to another level in Him? Would you like your personal relationship to reach new heights? Well, if your heart burns to draw closer to God more now than ever, then I encourage you to keep reading this post, and I pray that it changes your life like never before! Because I just believe that when we love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love our neighbors as we love ourselves, we will begin to experience God in a more fresh and powerful way! Are you ready for that?
I hope you said a BIG wholehearted, “YES!” Because I’m going to break down what Jesus is saying through Mark 12:30-31, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this; ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.’” Hopefully, I can help shed some light on loving God this way. Here goes…
Loving God with all your heart is spending time with Him in His presence. It’s shutting out all the noise around you and making it to that quiet place. Whether it’s in your bedroom, prayer closet, bathroom, car, lake, back patio, office, just spend that precious time with Him. God is relational. He is all about having a relationship with you. He wants you to talk to Him. So cry out to Him, laugh with Him, dance with Him, and worship Him. Sometimes you just have to press to get into His presence. And when you get there, you’ll realize that there’s no place on earth that you’d rather be. It’s awesome!
Another way to loving God with all your heart is to tell Him where you are. Don’t hide anything from Him. He is your best confidant. Whenever you need to talk to someone whom you know you can trust with your heart, you can count on Him. He’ll guide you when you need direction. He’ll give you wisdom when you ask. And He’ll give you unbelievable comfort when cry out to Him. His Word says that He is the God of all comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3-5). Just talk to Him.
Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us to, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” Also James 1:5-6, “If anyone needs wisdom-if you want to know what God wants you to do-ask him, and he will gladly tell you. He will not resent you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that you really expect him to answer, for a doubtful mind is as unsettled as a wave in the sea.” (NLT) The key is trusting Him and being open and honest with Him right where you are.
And lastly, the way to love the Lord with all of your heart is to keep His commandments, which means to obey His Word and do what He says (John 14:15). Whatever He’s speaking to you about doing, do it. There are so many blessings waiting for you through obedience and doing His revealed will. Trust that the Holy Spirit will lead and guide you every step of the way and help you to accomplish God’s purpose. Because doing God’s will and obeying His principles is loving Him with all of your heart.
Secondly, loving God with all of your soul is HUGE for women, especially. We can get so emotional at times and caught up in our feelings. And we really have to be careful with this. If this is not corrected or put into proper balance, we can mess up a lot of things, including our very purpose. The soul is the flesh. And sometimes it can be a mess! So it requires putting the flesh under subjection according to the Word of God. I would add that it requires putting on the fruit of self-control and having a humble spirit. No doubt this takes practice. And God is definitely in the business of giving us opportunities to get this right. So let’s make it our business to love the Lord with all of your soul and keep those emotions in check.
Here are just a few pointers…once you recognize that you’re emotionally challenged, think about why you’re upset or acting the way you’re acting. Your hormones could be out of whack, something could be bothering you, or you might have a lot going on that’s causing undue stress. Whatever the case pause for a moment, and pinpoint where you are. Then go to God about it. Also, it’s okay to let people know where you are. It’s alright to say, “I’m sorry. It’s not you. I’m just going through something right now. I just need a little time.” People can appreciate that over you biting their head off because you’re not loving God with all of your soul at the time. Be considerate and balance out the emotions. This is loving God with all of your soul.
Thirdly, love the Lord with all your mind. The way to do this is to consciously renew your mind with the Word of God. When negativity, fearful, immoral thoughts, or sinful actions play in your mind like a matinee, make the choice to cast them down quickly, and renew your mind with the Scriptures. Whatever your battle, find a Scripture in relation to that problem and go to war against the enemy, Satan with it. God wants us to love Him with all of our our mind. So do what 2 Corinthians 10:5 says, “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”
Loving God with all your mind also relates to your attitude. If you have a bad attitude, or when you feel one creeping up on you, then think about what you’re thinking about and ask the Holy Spirit to help you change your thoughts. Remember, if you continue to ponder on your thoughts, eventually they will become very powerful and become an actual action. You’ll find yourself in an outburst of anger, unnecessary argument, fight, or doing something that you’ll later regret. So the key is recognizing where you are and bringing those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ and God’s Word. We all have to press to do this.
And finally, loving God with all of your strength. I’ve learned over the years that loving God this way means doing what you have to do beyond how you feel. It’s asking Him to give you the supernatural strength to do what He’s calling you to do, no matter what it is. It’s pressing to get what needs to be done…done! Even if you’re hurt, broken-hearted, tired physically or emotionally, and even spiritually. It’s saying, “Lord, I’ll do it. I just need you to give me the supernatural strength.” When you do this, watch God move as He gives you what to you need to keep moving forward! (Read Isaiah 40:29-31)
Now, before I close this post, I want you to make it personal. In your own quiet time, pray and ask God how you can love Him even greater. Ask Him to lead and guide you to that secret place where you can be alone with Him (without all of the distractions of everyday life). Ask Him, “Lord, where am I with you today?” Sometimes you have to do this so that God can reveal to you what’s in your heart that’s not like Him. When you do this, He’ll show you how to get free. It’s so personal. So choose today to grow deeper in your walk with the Lord, by loving him with everything within you.
I hope and pray that this post has helped you understand just a little bit more about how to love God with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength. I just believe that when we love Him like this, we will experience Him in a greater way. But most importantly, it pleases His heart! So let’s love God and let’s love each other sis, because that’s the way our Father in heaven would have it. ;-)
Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s be ready from the Inside Out!
*Thanks for reading! I hope and pray that you’ve been enlightened from this post. Feel absolutely free to leave a comment or for questions you can email me directly at email@example.com, and I will respond promptly. Also, tune in every Monday at 7:30am for new posts! Don’t forget to “Like” my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/InsideOutWCourtnaye) and share this blog with friends, family, co-workers, or your women’s group or ministry. I’d love to stay connected and help more women grow in the Lord! Thanks again and may God be with you!