Some time ago, I realized how hard it is to quantify my love for God.
I know the first commandment well: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6:5).
But what does that look like, exactly?
After all, when I want to show love for my husband or my children, I might kiss them. Or wink at them. Or greet them with a smile. Or care for their needs.
I can’t do any of that with God.
You see, I tend to think about love in romantic terms. Or maternal terms. Maybe even friendship terms. And let’s not forget patriotic terms.
All of these types of love are commonplace to our thinking. They’re well-known in our culture. Familiar to our flesh.
I don’t know about you, but “love the LORD your God with all your heart” is kind of ambiguous. Kind of hazy and hard to nail down.
Yet this has been the first command for centuries.
Though none have kept it perfectly, some have made noteworthy efforts. We read about a few of them on the pages of God’s Word.
And so in an effort to really think about what it means to love God the way I’m supposed to, I’m going to study some of these portraits of love over the next few weeks.
And guess what…
I’m asking you to join me! Starting today, for the next six Mondays, I’ll offer a new portrait for us to study through the week.
I’m not going to share my thoughts in this space. At least not yet. I’ll just point you to God’s Word, encouraging you to dig in for yourself.
Let’s jump into the little book of Hosea this week!
What you need: your Bible, a pen or pencil, Portrait of Love: Hosea printable
Click here for a brief historical background and overview of the book.
A few notes before you get started:
- Space out your reading through the week, answering the questions as you encounter them in the text.
- Don’t rush through your reading! Focus on quality over quantity. Consider these real people with real emotions and real problems. Think about what their experience was like. Their lives are recorded on the pages of God’s Word as an example for you! What can you learn from them?
- Begin and end your time in God’s Word with prayer. There is no better Teacher than the Holy Spirit, and He can open your eyes to God’s truth and help you apply it.
- The printable worksheet provided is only a guide. You will likely need to continue some of your answers on the back of the page. Feel free to add to the outline or omit from it. The goal is for you to ponder and apply the Scriptures.
- As you read, keep our main question in mind: What can I learn about loving God with all my heart, soul, and strength?
And let’s get started!
All done? Here’s week two! Portrait of Love: Hannah
Week three – Portrait of Love: Daniel
Week four – Portrait of Love: Paul
Week five – Portrait of Love: David
Week six – Portrait of Love: Peter