“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Mt 22:37).
We all know this commandment (Dt 6:5), of which Jesus reminds us again in the Gospel. It is the first and most important of all the commandments. When we observe it, it gives us the strength to keep the second commandment, to love our neighbor as ourselves, as we begin to see him as a beloved child of God.
How can we love the Lord with all our hearts and so match the Father’s love for us, who never ceases to think of us? Does not our scattered nature inevitably get in the way? Even St. Paul confessed that he felt a law in his members that fought against the law of his spirit (Rom 7:23).
First of all, we must keep in mind that this is an invitation of love, because this whole commandment is a matter of love. In addition, we must remember that our Father will never ask or demand of us something that would be impossible to fulfill.
Therefore, there must be a way to love God with all our mind…
Let us look at strong love on the human level. When one is in love, is it not true that one is constantly thinking of the other person and fulfilling one’s duties as quickly as possible in order to have all the time for the beloved? Is it not also true that one is ready to give up many habits in order to adapt oneself to the beloved? And don’t all thoughts revolve around him or her, so that everything else takes a back seat? If it is true love, does it not lead to a deeper and deeper union of hearts, so that as time goes by, the close relationship and thinking about the other person becomes more and more natural? And if we have to be physically separated for a while, don’t we keep in touch or even put up a photo to remember him or her forever?
So we see that true human love reflects the form of love with which the Father asks us to love Him. And if it is possible on a human level, it should be even more so with God, who is the source of love, even if our physical eyes cannot see Him.
We will return to this subject…