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Love God… Love Others “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” ... “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Many wonderful sermons have been preached over the generations regarding the greatest of the commandments. Yet, the greatest sermon ever preached is that of a life yielding to God and demonstrating His love. Without first loving the Lord, our love for our neighbors will lack lasting depth and demonstrate merely acts of human kindness. In the Song of Solomon, the words written declare the intimate love of the Bridegroom with His Bride. Her cry “Draw me after you, and let us run together! The king has brought me into his chambers” is played out throughout the beauty of the story (SOS 1:4). With all of our heart, soul, and mind we are drawn by the Spirit of God in response to our hunger for Him. It is through our response to His wooing that we are brought into intimacy with the Lord. It is in His chambers where He delights in sharing His heart, His desires, and His vision. It is there that there is an impartation of His love. He restores our souls as we come to that place of lying in His green pastures and allowing Him to lead us beside still waters (Ps. 23:2,3). In that encounter of resting in His love, we become healed within and saturated with His very nature. God is love (1 Jn. 4:8). His very character envelops us in seasons of intimacy, causing a transference of His presence and transforming those around us. We cannot help but love, as He has loved us (1 Jn. 4:7). The Lord has a tremendous way of transferring His desires to become our desires. His desire is for us to share His Love, not a mere expression of working “our human love” to meet the needs of others. It is not by functioning through a mental assent of “what would Jesus do,” rather we must yield to “Jesus demonstrating His love through us.” Only as we love Him, and receive His love, we will be carriers of His presence and true givers of His love to those who desperately need it. A natural outworking happens as our love and intimacy with the Lord grows, our love for our “neighbors” also grows. Many are hurting. Many have yet to hear of the Love that satisfies. “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Our neighbors are expectantly waiting. Pastor Sharon Carlson