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Monday, March 15, 2010

Day 16: Love makes the world go 'round

The Day 16 chapter is about a topic many people appear to forget, Jesus's command to love others as you love yourself.

A friend of mine was telling me recently about her two brothers, both of whom are religious but attend different churches. One brother is refusing to go to the wedding of the other brother because he goes to the "wrong" church and is, therefore, destined to go to hell. It is attitudes like this that drive people away from church and, quite frankly, if a church is promoting this belief I think it is a good thing that people are driven away from it. Fortunately, not all churches are like this. In the lead up to my wedding I attended church (because it seemed silly to me to get married in a church I didn't attend) and it certainly didn't condemn people for going to the "wrong" church.

Anyway, back to the book. This chapter explains that love is the most important part of life because:
  • life without love is worthless - relationships, not possessions, are what matters in life
  • love lasts forever - people remember how you treat them above everything else
  • God will judge you on the basis of the quality of your relationships because it is a measure of your spiritual maturity
Rick Warren writes that being busy is the enemy of relationships. Having worked in a very demanding job I am well aware of this - going to work early and getting home late leaves little time to talk to your spouse, let alone catch up with friends. I did this because I was brought up to believe that work hard and being successful was important. Lately, I have been questioning this because the payoff just isn't there, and this chapter makes me question it even more.

The book suggests that you wake up each morning and tell God of your intention of spending time during the day loving God and loving other people. Something tells me that if I had done this for the last 20 years, instead of spending so much time at work, I would have had a far more fulfilling life.

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