I struggled in my younger years. I was asking this question: Do I really love God? I sensed God loved me deeply and I wanted to love God back. I remember feeling a bit hypocritical singing this song as I waited on the school bus to pick me up: “I love You Lord, and I lift my voice to worship You. Take joy my King in what you hear. May it be a sweet, sweet sound in Your ear.”
Later, I discovered verses like these, verses that pointed me in the direction on how to love God back. I so wanted to do something for God. I wanted God to feel loved as I felt so loved by Him. The first verse I discovered that settled my heart in this matter was John 14:15:
“If you love me, keep my commands.”
Loving God is as simple as obeying. That sounds so easy, but I know we all can present complex circumstances where we aren’t sure what we should do. The Scripture is clear about many things that we should and shouldn’t do. We have the Ten Commandments. We have commands like, make disciples, welcome the stranger/foreigner, feed my sheep, and so on. When I live out these commands I’m loving God. When I fail do do so I am committing the sin of omission or commission. Omission is like omitting God’s commands from my life, not doing what God asks of us like sharing our faith and welcoming the stranger. These are the sins of omission. Commission is doing sinful acts: lying, murdering, coveting, stealing… both are serious and we all struggle our entire lives to improve. We all need confession. We are not capable of obedience without the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. Let’s surrender and experience the joy of obedience, loving God back today.