In all my years of attending church and Sunday school, I’ve heard talks and lessons, and sung songs about. keeping the commandments. And it’s been my experience that the majority of those talks highlighted the command to keep the Sabbath day holy more often than all the others combined. But just how many commandments are there? Ten? Twelve? Two?
When Jesus was questioned as to which was the greatest commandment, He replied, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind…and a second is like it. You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt 22:37-39 ESV)
After my recent bible studies and contemplation, I’d venture to say there is really only one great commandment…and that is the command to love.
All commandments fit nicely into the command to love. If we love God, there will be no desire for other Gods or idols. If we love our fellow man, there would be no stealing, murder, adultery or coveting. When we love, we are glorifying our Father in Heaven.
Love is always the answer.
I’m an admirer of Mother Teresa. She lived a life of love in action. Her legacy lives on, and so do her words of wisdom. Here is one of her most famous poems:
People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
It was never between you and them anyway.
And might I add a few stanzas of my own?
When others judge you unfairly…love them anyway.
If neighbors, co-workers or family ignore or shun you (even at your own son’s wedding)…love them anyway.
When the people you love most are too busy for phone calls or text messages…keep loving them anyway.
If family and friends rebuff your expressions of love…continue to love them anyway.
You see, it’s all about love.
All you need to give is LOVE.