Have you ever wished you could measure love? Often in life we wonder how much we are loved by certain others in our lives. We even question God’s love for us, making statements like, “If God really loves me, why does He allow difficulties in my life? Why does He allow things that hurt me so much?” In our relationship with God we can become consumed with questioning and wondering how much does God really love us? Our gauge seems to depend on the ease with which we glide through life’s troubles.
There is a flip side to this question of how much we are loved by God; which is, how much do we love Him? Seldom do we ask ourselves such a question. We want God to do as we think best for our lives, giving us what we determine we need, when we determine we need it. It’s not often that we take time to meditate upon the motives of our own hearts, daring to question, how much do we truly love God?
As far as that goes, is there even a gauge to measure one’s own love for God? After all, we are an imperfect people. We are in constant need of being molded into maturity as we go through life’s challenges, daily allowing the hands of God to hold us and shape us into His image. Only as we permit God access into our existence are we then able to walk in His own courage and wisdom as we travel through the moments of our lives.
Still, how do we know that we really love God? Is there some meter to measure our own hearts? This week a dear friend sent a book to me titled, Lord, Could You Hurry A Little? This collection of poems is written by Ruth Harms Calkin. She writes the following in a poem called, The Infallible Test.
“Lord, often I have wondered if my love for you is genuine, Or do I flippantly mouth it like a small child saying grace at the table? But today as I read your Word I discovered the one infallible test: ‘The one who loves me is the one who obeys me.’ Lord, never again need I wonder. You have made it plain enough.”
Yes, God has indeed made it plain enough. Jesus was instructing His disciples when He said to them in John 14:15, “If you love me, obey my commandments.” His disciple, John, wrote in I John 5:3, “Loving God means keeping His commandments, and His commandments are not burdensome.”
We must not forget that God’s instruction to us to obey Him is not Him being some control freak. It’s God displaying His vast love for us. You see, our ways are imperfect; His ways are without mistake; they are good and loving. For us to walk in His ways is not to boost the ego of God, but to keep us safe through all our days, to keep us living in peace, behaving in wisdom, shielded from consequences of walking in our own foolish ways.
So the question comes: How much do we love God?