From the Pastor

“One of the scribes came near and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, ‘Which commandment is first of all?”

– Mark 12:28” –

When we think about greatness who do we think about? In my generation the greatest was the champ> Muhammad Ali. For others maybe that was Joe Louis or Rocky Grazziano. To be the greatest is to be the best. We think of stars who are or were the best. We think of great leaders and great wise men and women. To be great is to be the top of the list. And here Jesus is asked which commandment is the greatest. Which one is No. 1 in his viewpoint and faith. He replies, “The first is, ‘Hear O Israel: the Lord our God , the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.” The greatest commandment, number one, is to love God fully and with everything that you have in you: heart, soul, mind, and strength. But then he says, “And the second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There are no other commandments greater than these.” The other great commandment is to love others you would as you want to be loved, as you love God and know that God loves you. Jesus says these are the top two that everyone should follow and live each day.

The best thing we can do for God is love. It is the highest priority that we have in our life with God. To be totally devoted to God as we are seeking to be devoted in love to each other. It is how we live as Christian and United Methodist people daily. We seek to love. We seek to be people who are not letting the despair and hurt and the pain of the world swallow the us up. But that we are seeking to bring an alternative from God, and living love and giving that love to all who need it: whether we like them or not, whether we agree with them or not, whether we love them or not. We are to love and to keep on loving all people in compassion and grace and hope daily.

As we approach Valentine’s Day, and it’s notions of love, let us seek to truly love. Let us seek to reach out in care for our world and it’s people and love them with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, as we would want to be loved, as we know God loves us, in a full and complete love. Let us live a love that heals, makes new, and uplifts all who live with us and around us so that as they can feel and experience that love from our hearts in God daily.

Peace and Blessings,

Pastor Jim