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So Easy to Love

Lord, help me to realize how brief my time on earth will be.

Help me to know that I am here for but a moment more.

My life is no longer than my hand!

My whole lifetime is but a moment to You.

Proud man! Frail as breath! A shadow!

Psalm 39:4-6

Teach us to number our days

and recognize how few they are;

help us to spend them as we should.

Psalm 90:12

Why do we keep such sentimental little things as a birthday card that says, “Happy Birthday and remember that I love you.” My eldest, Pres, wrote a note to me one Sunday morning in church many years ago with his first wobbly manuscript printing skills: “YOU ARE PRETTY. I LOVE YOU.” I saved that scribbled note, along with others from my little tow-headed boys (who are now grown men) expressing their love. Those notes are some of my most precious possessions.

That’s nothing out of the ordinary. God knew how important love expressed would be. Love was the passion that relentlessly drove Jesus as He carried the cross to a hill called “Calvary.” Love was the passion that would not release God until He gave His only Son: For God so loved . . .(John 3:16). All of that to say when we express our love to others we are fulfilling a very important commandment. It isn’t tithing. It isn’t singing in the choir. It isn’t perfect attendance every time the Church door is open. It isn’t a rote visit on Tuesday night visitation. It is all wrapped up in a package labeled LOVE. And according to I Corinthians 13, there is nothing that we can do (nothing, not even sacrificing our lives[1]) that impresses our Lord if it is done without that same passion, that LOVE.

When He was asked, “What is the greatest commandment,” [2] He replied, “To love God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). Then He continued, “And the second greatest commandment is this: Love others” (Matthew 22:39). I have never pursued a study of just how many times we are urged to love the people in our world and around the world, but I know it would be a very lengthy study. Why is this so vital? Why is this the “second greatest commandment?” Because love is the greatest gift we can give. “But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (I Cor. 13:13)

So what is the most important thing you can do today? Very simply, show love to someone. Have you called your mom recently? Dad, how about taking your son to supper and a movie and then later taking your daughter for breakfast? Perhaps give a prolonged embrace for a woman who has recently become a widow, or jot a note to a person just out of the hospital. Maybe you are being called to reach out to someone who’s having a rough time in her/his marriage, to a young man who just lost his job, to your pastor, to your daughter-in-law, or to a child who is struggling with rebellion. You might give someone a vase of flowers with a note that reads, “Just to let you know that I’m thinking about you and that I love you.” Or visit an invalid who never steps outside the house and leave them softly murmuring, “It is so nice to know someone is thinking about me.”

Man! Frail as breath! A shadow! Here to touch and love today – a memory tomorrow.[3] God, in His wisdom and because of His compassion tries to warn us about this desperate need that is deep within our heart and that we see in the eyes and on the faces of those we meet on the street and those we live with. He says, “Love the people in your life today.” You don’t know how many times you have left to say, “I love you,” and the greatest gift you can give is love.

Are you saying, “I can’t do that, Anabel. I have never known love. I don’t know how to love”? Or how about, “You don’t know the people in my world, Anabel.”

No, I don’t know and you are so right. You cannot love, but Christ lives IN you and He wants to love people through you, for you! Loving isn’t easy. Loving us enough to suffer and die for us is met with incredulity. Loving us enough to give His only Son is beyond our comprehension. Loving the people in your world may not be easy, but can He do it through you!

Thank You my dear Father and my precious Jesus for loving me so much and for loving others through me. I know I’m not always so easy to love!

For the whole law is fulfilled in one word,

in the statement,

“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

Galatians 5:14

[1] I Corinthians 13:3

[2] Matthew 22:36

[3] Psalm 103:15-16

About the Author

Anabel spent decades teaching in many contexts through Lifetime Guarantee Ministries. She has taught countless others how to have a genuine intimate faith and a sound marriage. She shared from her heart about living from the heart. Lifetime’s beloved founder and mentor passed away November 7, 2010. Her legacy and influence are timeless and priceless.