“The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.” 1 Timothy 1:5
Our aim is to be love. Not being right. Not proving a point. Not responding in kind or making sure others treat us as they should. Only ever love. Love from a pure heart. Love from a good conscience. Love from a sincere faith.
Romans 12:9-10 commands us, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” A few verses later, in Romans 13:8-10, Paul writes, “Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the commandments…are summed up in this word: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.”
How often do our eyes get drawn away from this aim? Our focus turns inward, out of hurt or selfishness or pride. And love for our neighbor suffers. We likely won’t even recognize the shift at first. Especially since those around us are often looking out for themselves first and foremost. So our lives start to look “normal.” We fit in. We adopt the perspective and mindset of society. Our concern becomes getting what we “deserve.”
Let us break out of the paradigm set by our society. Joy and contentment aren’t found in looking out for ourselves. They are found in pouring ourselves out for others and trusting God to fill us with Himself and to provide our every need. Because He will. He won’t fail us. Jesus came to serve in humility, setting an example for those of us who choose to follow Him. So we serve as well, with love as our aim. Because love was His aim. We love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). We are able to love because He first loved us, and because He loves us still and continues His transforming work in our hearts.