“And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”
Living the Christian life can be summarized in the verse above. There should be no believer who doesn’t want to be the Christian that God expects of them people to be. The great thing about the expectations of God is that anybody can be and do what He expects them to be and do. When God says “with all,” He is saying that He expects you to do these actions with your “all” and not another’s all. In other words, God is not concerned with how you compare with others in respect to what He wants you to do, but He compares what you do in respect to what He knows is your all. The key to being the believer God wants you to be can be wrapped up in five actions.
Loving God with all of your heart is the first thing that God expects from you. Your heart is your emotions. In other words, God wants you to be emotional about Him. Whatever level of emotions you may have, He wants the most emotions from you to be about Him. Everybody has emotions, but everyone exhibits their emotions differently. God simply wants you to love Him emotionally to the highest level of your emotions.
Loving God with all of your soul is the second thing that God expects from you. Your soul is your Christian character. In other words, God doesn’t want you to serve Him one day a week, but He wants you to serve Him every day and every hour. Loving God with your all of your soul simply means that you will do right all the time.
Loving God with all of your strength is the third thing God expects from you. Your strength is your physical ability. In other words, God wants you to give whatever level of strength you have for Him. God doesn’t want you to serve Him with some of your strength, but with all of your strength. Your love for God is certainly revealed in how much effort you give to serve Him. A half-hearted effort in serving God reveals a half-hearted love for God. If you truly love God, you will give your whole being to serve Him.
Loving God with your mind is the fourth thing God expects from you. Loving God with your mind is spending time with Him in His Word, praying, and meditating on Him. You cannot say that you love God and not spend time with Him in His Word or in prayer. If you love God, it will be exhibited in your desire to spend time with Him in His Word and prayer, and by how much time you spend thinking about Him.
The fifth expectation that God has for the believer is in the phrase, “and thy neighbor.” The four ways God wants you to love Him is the same way He wants you to love your neighbor. My friend, if you love God the way that He wants to be loved, you won’t be able to help but love your neighbor in the same way. To love your neighbor with your heart is to be as excited as they are when they have good news, but it also means to cry with them when they are hurting. To love your neighbor with your soul is to treat them right when you’re away from them as you would when you are in front of them. To love your neighbor with your strength is to help them in the same way you would want to be helped if you were in their condition. To love them with your mind is to pray for them in the same way that you would want others to pray for you. You can successfully love your neighbor as God wants if you will love God the way He expects you to love Him.