King James Version (KJV)
35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Not long after my husband and I got married I told him that I choose to love him. I know, that's not very romantic. But I had allowed myself to be led astray too many times by the feelings that come with new relationships. By the feelings of excitement and wonder of a new romance. I had learned not to trust those feelings so I decided that I needed to be much more analytically in choosing my mate.
My husband and I dated in high school for about a year, so I already knew his character when we finally reunited nearly 20 years later. No, I did not have the fireworks and the swooning and all that other happy horse manure that comes with a new relationship. I chose to love him.
Love is a verb. It's a 'doing' word. Love is less about what you feel and what you get out of it and more about what you do for another. And love is a choice. All types of love, not just romantic.
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
If love weren't a choice, mothers wouldn't be able to abort their unborn babies. If love weren't a choice, divorce rates would be almost unheard of. If love weren't a choice, all types of violent crimes, including domestic abuse, would be nonexistent. If love were not a choice, same-sex relationships would be a myth. But love is a choice.
I don't claim to have this all figured out. I am not always very loving toward my family. I am often selfish and look out for myself. I sometimes neglect to show love to my family. I have been known to walk past someone homeless on the street without choosing to show love. I'm not writing this just for the reader, but also to remind myself, that I need to choose to do love every day.
God chose to do love for us. We need to choose to do love for others.
King James Version (KJV)
35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.