Love Comes First

Love the Lord your God.
           —Mark 12:30

In A General Theory of Love, authors Thomas Lewis, Fari Amini, and Richard Lannon wrote: “Where intellect and emotion clash, the heart often has the greatest wisdom . . . Who we are and who we become depends on whom we love.”

Recitation of the Shema is a morning and evening Jewish ritual that gives the heart first place: “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength” (Dt 6:4–5). Centuries later, Jesus added, “and with all your mind” (Mk 12:30).

When all-your-heart love of God is dominant, all-your-mind commitment will follow. “Faith, hope, and love abide . . . and the greatest of these is love” (1 Cor 13:13).

Love God with all your heart.
All else is subordinate.

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