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Above All, Love - Wholly Loved - December 11

Above All, Love

By Susan Aken

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind … Love your neighbor as yourself.” Matthew 22:37-39

Regret crushed my heart as I realized I’d unknowingly hurt a loved one with my judgmental attitude. She was brave enough to confront me and share her pain. I was shocked and defended myself but soon concluded that even if I didn’t remember that instance there were other times I’d been disapproving and critical.

God has gradually opened my eyes to how judgmental and self-righteous I’ve been.

When I was young it was easy to take on a few rules I could keep and determine I was a good Christian. Soon I grew proud that I kept this regimen and judged those who didn’t. All the while I was blind to what Jesus Himself said were the most important commandments: love God above all and love others as we love ourselves.

I hid behind outward acts and appeared good while inside I was filled with fear, impatience, selfishness, and pride.

Trying to live by the “letter of the law,” as given in the Old Testament, is futile. If one isn’t trusting in Christ, it ultimately leads to eternal death. If a believer in Jesus tries to live righteously in their own strength, it results in frustration, self-condemnation, sometimes depression, and most often inauthenticity.

I’m sad I’ve hurt others but God’s grace covers even that. He forgives the self-righteous judge as well as those whose sin is known by all. His grace covers anyone who believes in Jesus.

God calls us to love Him with our whole being. When we love Him first, we’re better able to love others. Love is the fulfillment of the law.

Have you been focused on rules?

Focus on loving Him above all.


Susan Aken is a homemaker, teacher, writer, and frequent contributor to Wholly Loved Ministries’ projects. She lives in Nebraska but was born and raised in Oklahoma. She and her husband have one son. Her greatest love is for the Lord Jesus Christ who has redeemed her and set her free. Susan enjoys reading, photography, spending time with family and friends, and writing. She has a heart for prayer ministry and loves her church. Visit her online at susanaken53.wordpress.com.

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