1 Jn 4,19-5,4
Let us love, then, because he first loved us. Anyone who says ‘I love God’ and hates his brother, is a liar, since whoever does not love the brother whom he can see cannot love God whom he has not seen. Indeed this is the commandment we have received from him, that whoever loves God, must also love his brother. Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is a child of God, and whoever loves the father loves the son. In this way we know that we love God’s children, when we love God and keep his commandments. This is what the love of God is: keeping his commandments. Nor are his commandments burdensome, because every child of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith.
Love is so much the most important thing, that our whole existence without it is not explainable at all and would be deprived of the most essential! This is because God created us, redeems us and will complete our life in eternity out of love . Therefore also „love covers many sins“ (1 Pet 4,8), and in the evening of life we will be judged according to how much we loved, as St. John of the Cross so wonderfully expressed. Also the texts of the Holy Scriptures show us the importance of Love in relation to the final judgement (cf. Mt 25,31-46)!
Once again we are reminded that to love means to keep the commandments of God and that these commandments are not difficult. From here we can also have a look at our spiritual life and learn to understand something! It’s a bit like with the commandments of God!
As long as I still live in the world of sin and my soul is bound to this, so long the commandments of God appear inaccessible and represent a mountain that cannot be climbed! If I – with the grace of God – turn to Him and sincerely obey His commandments, then they become easier and easier; and an the contrary, to leave the commandments becomes more and more alien to us, even though temptations may come! Love has grown!
Every day I try to follow the commandments of God in the very subtleties of their fulfillment fortifies the love of God in us, and his commandments become a matter of course!
So it is also with the more intensive way of following Christ! If we have heard this call and seriously reach out to him, then the first steps on this path are often easy, because God invites us to follow this path of love! In a certain sense we are inspired and often beginners think that they are already very capable of love!
After some time, when we follow the path of inner cleansing, we might loose our emotional lightness, but our willingness to follow the path called upon is becoming ever stronger, and every step makes the love grow bigger!
Thus, also on the spiritual path the naturalness of following the movements of the Holy Spirit can grow, and then the path really becomes easier, not because of the feelings that push us, as in the beginning; but because love has grown, and everything that is done in love, acquires that incomparable taste of love and is usually light!
And, in fact, the path of love is objectively easy, since love frees the soul, makes it agile, redeems it from fruitless self-occupation. Thanks to the action of the Holy Spirit, that which the natural man would not be capable of, is made possible.
“My yoke is soft and my burden is light” (Mt 11,30) Jesus tells us and here lies the secret of agility: the more the supernatural life unfolds in us – that is, the more God dwells in us – the more love will unfold and transform us! Even if loads, afflictions, persecutions and other crosses reach us, is the love able to carry this and grow from it!
Surely one day we will stand before the Lord and say: O, Beloved Lord, how considerate and forbearing You were with me, and what little burden you have put on me!
St. Paul says it even more beautifully: “What are the sufferings of the present compared to the glory that awaits us!” (Rom 8,18)
From this love, the gaze on the brothers also becomes ever more loving, and now the Lord grants us this invaluable exchange: By loving Him, we will be able to love our brother and neighbour better! And, at the same time, by loving our neighbour and brother, the love of God will grow.
Harpa Dei accompanies the daily scriptural interpretation or spiritual teaching of Br. Elija, their spiritual father. These meditations can be heard on the following website www.en.elijamission.net