Jesus summed it up in one phrase: “Love God and love people” (My paraphrase). In other words, the greatest commandment according to Jesus is all about love. If we love God first and foremost, then out of that love we should love others. It sounds simple enough, until we start attempting to live it out. When we begin to look at the reality of how we should love God and people versus how it actually plays out day to day, we’ll probably feel a little guilty and convicted of all the times we’ve fallen short.
Thankfully, Jesus knows that we’re not capable of overcoming our natural selfishness on our own, so He sent us a helper: The Holy Spirit. When a person comes to know God through the person of Jesus Christ, we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Think of the way a friend, counselor or even a nurse supports, encourages and walks with you through a tough season. The Holy Spirit does the same thing by helping us follow and obey God’s commands.
What does the Holy Spirit do, exactly? The Holy Spirit begins to transform us from the inside out, helping us reflect the spirit and character of Christ. It’s the Holy Spirit that transforms our perspective from “ought to” to “want to” when it comes to obeying God’s Word – and that makes all the difference in how we live out God’s love.
As we navigate this time of global crisis, ask God for a fresh filling of the Holy Spirit to help you love others well. This might mean showing extra patience towards your spouse or kids who are stuck at home, offering to pick up groceries for your elderly neighbors, or perhaps it’s praying for global leaders making decisions and medical workers who are on the front lines caring for the sick. For the Jesus follower, now is the time to ask God for help living and loving others as Christ.