In Mark 20:13, Jesus said: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. When I think of this verse, I think of the question “Are you ALL in?” Although the question is not original, it is meaningful. We need to be “ALL IN” with our hearts, souls, minds, and strength.
We need to love God and others-- with everything. This means loving God with all our heart — our essence. Our relationship with God begins from within each of us.
Along with our hearts, we are called to love God with all our soul. In the first five books of the Old Testament the “soul” refers to one’s whole being as a living person. I recently read a post on Facebook that stated, “Love God with your passions, hungers, perceptions, and thoughts.” If we are going to love God with everything—even our passions, hungers, perceptions, and thoughts—we must love him with how we speak, with what we do, with our hands, with how we utilize our talents, and with how we react to challenges. Our entire being is to display that we love God.
We are called to love God with our minds. Yes, our minds. Love God by what we study, read, watch, and listen to. St. Paul wrote, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8-NIV)
What then is the meaning of loving God with our “might”? The strength of a person is not simply who he/she is, but what he/she has at his/her disposal. Think with me. This could mean physical abilities, talents, and wealth. This means that the call to love God is not only with our physical muscle, but with everything we have available to us for honoring God — which includes our house, our clothes, cell phones, and movies, and music, and computers, and time.
We are called to be “ALL IN.” This means that the covenant love we are called into must be wholehearted, life-encompassing, and community-impacting. This kind of love we should have for him does not exist apart from love for Jesus. Are you “ALL IN”?