Last week we posed the question of, “What are proper measures that a church, primarily the people, are becoming healthy?” Another way to put it is, “How are we going to measure the mission God has given us to make disciples?” It is that focus that will drive a series of three posts in the coming weeks. This week we start with our first measure; Love God Supremely.
When Jesus was asked to summarize the entire law, which was supposed to guide the people of God, he said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Deut 6:4-5 / Matt 22:37 / Mark 12:30 / Luke 10:27). Jesus, in essence, is saying that the most important thing about a follower of God is that he/she love God supremely. This threefold love is with mind, soul, and heart—all of oneself is to love God. To be the people of God is be people marked by a deep love and affection for him. (Rom 12:11).
A follower of God is called to find their greatest delight in the Lord (Ps 16:11, 37:4 / Phil 4:4). From the Old Testament to the New Testament, scriptures instruct us to see God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit as most enjoyable above all other pursuits. Light in the Desert Church wants to see all who gather here long for God more than earthly pleasures. Much like the parable Jesus told about a man who found a treasure in a field and then in joy went and sold all he had to purchase that field (Matt 13:44). The treasure was Jesus; what he sold was earthly pursuits.
When God becomes our treasure, it radically reorients our lives and places our greatest love and affection on Him. Though not comprehensive, a love for God supremely will work its way out in our lives through:
- A growing esteem for Jesus
- Living a life of repentance
- Interest in theology and doctrine
- Deep devotion to the Word of God
Brothers and Sisters, these are great measures that we, the church, are getting healthy!
Grace and Peace,
Resources for further reading:
Jared C. Wilson, The Gospel-Driven Church: Uniting Church-Growth Dreams with the Metrics of Grace (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2019), 53-71.
Jonathan Edwards, Distinguishing Marks of a Work of the Spirit of God
Mark Dever, Nine Marks of a Healthy Church (Wheaton: Crossway, 2000)