When asked what the greatest commandment was Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, mind, body and soul.” So how do we love and devote our whole heart to God? It has been said that many people miss Heaven by 12 inches, as in, the distance from their head to their hearts. They might have a head faith, and believe everything mentally about the Bible, but their heart doesn’t really love God. Here are some steps you can follow to know whether you love God with your whole heart and how to do so.
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Think about what you think about most. Are more of your thoughts about what you will eat next, or about sports or another person? It has been said that whatever consumes our thoughts is our idol. Ideally, God should consume our thoughts, or the realization that He is there, with us, all the time. The Bible says to pray without ceasing, meaning we should have an ongoing conversation with God that never ends. We should be thinking about and talking to God all the time, but if our minds are always elsewhere, we can then know how much we really love God.
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Consider how you spend your money. The Bible says, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Do you spend your money only on yourself? Then you might be your own idol. You might be your own god, in a sense. This is why the Bible talks about tithing, not because God needs our money, but because He wants our hearts. God knows that wherever our money goes, our hearts will follow.
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Realize that love is active. Put hands on and feet under your love. Think about what gets you the most excited. Love is not a feeling or some words to say repeatedly.
Where is your active passion? Do various kinds of entertainment, such as movies and sports paralyze you in a chair for hours at a time? Are your passionate actions about saving the lost and serving God? Or are you more passionate about being a spectator or even a player of football — or going shopping — than you are about spiritual actions?
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See how thankful you are for what God has done for you. The more we love someone, the more thankful and appreciative we are for him or her. How much do you really appreciate God sending His son to die for you? How often do you thank God for all the little blessings in your life? One of the best ways to show love to God is by saying, “Thank you” as often as possible.
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See whether you keep God’s commandments, as best you can. Jesus said, “If you love me you will keep my commandments.” If we are truly thankful for all God has done for us, we will see that the least we can do is live as He would want us to live. So, love your neighbor as yourself. Paul said, “Offer your bodies as living sacrifices. This is your spiritual act of worship.” How we live our lives is how we show how much we love and respect God.
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Consider how much you love your fellow man is how much you love God. Your love for the lost is a measure of how open your heart is to God.
Do you keep your fellow man at arms length? Do you not really trust God and so not let Him into every part of your heart? How often do you pour your heart out to God in prayer, worship, etc.? The degree to how much we do, shows how much we really love God.
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Think about how much you respect God. Do you ever use God’s name in vain? We are meant to have the highest degree of respect and reverence for God. We need to see that He alone is the ruler of the universe, and the ruler of our personal universe. The Bible says that we are to fear God. This means that we are to have an awe of God. We are to fully realize how powerful He is and how holy He is. “There is no one like our God.” He is unlike any other being that has ever lived.
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Show your love for God by your love for your fellow man. Why? Jesus said:
“This commandment I give unto you, that you love one another…”
“By this you shall know that you are my disciples, if you love one another…”
“You have heard love your neighbor, but I say to you love your enemy!”
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Do good works to express your love of your neighbor and enemy as your love for God. Devote your heart fully to taking God’s love and the Gospel to others, and helping His family, because whom He loves is most deserving of our heart. Love is ____ (something-you-do). But, it is not like giving your body to be burned. *”…we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10).
Jesus said: “Whatever you did for the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25:40).
Make sure that your relationship with God is not dead, in the sense that it is an obligation, and there is no love there. Jesus said that if we are lukewarm, He will spit us out of His mouth. Don’t be lukewarm.
Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.” (Matthew 25:45)