But I will say I was at least willing to give dancing a try. A few years ago some friends of ours asked my wife and me to take a dancing class with them. For something like eight weeks we took dancing lessons. Notice I didn't say, we learned how to dance. I said, we took dancing lessons.
The reality is, those eight weeks of lessons would have been enough, we could have learned how to dance if we then regularly went dancing. But going clubbing just isn’t a top priority for us. So any dance moves that we may have picked up during those eight weeks were soon completely forgotten.
Like any other skill, learning how to dance takes discipline. It’s more than just receiving instruction. You’ve got to practice faithfully if it’s going to sink in.
When Jesus walked this earth He was once asked which, of all the six hundred plus commandments that were on the books at the time, did He consider to be the most important. Jesus didn't hesitate. He gave a simple, yet straightforward three-part answer: Love God. Love others. Love yourself.
If we’ve grown up in the church we’ve more than likely received all kinds of instruction on how we are to love. We’ve heard it preached and taught, we’ve sung hymns and choruses about it, we may have even memorized Scripture verses about love. But if we don’t practice it and practice it faithfully, all that instruction means nothing.
We live in a time where people are desperate for love. Without meaning to sound like a 60's flower child, What the world needs now is love, sweet love--no, not just for some, but for everyone.
Imagine a world in which people's primary theme was love. If, rather than being driven by success or greed or power, our words, thoughts, and actions reflected our love for God, others, and ourselves.
I'm guessing our cities and towns would feature more churches and fewer courts; more parades and fewer protests. Our country would spend more time building bridges and less time building walls. Our families would look more like the Cleavers and less like the Kardashians.
Granted, our personal decision to practice Christ-like love may not change the world. But it will change our world. When we set out to love God with all our heart, all our mind, and all our strength, our relationship with Him will flourish beyond our wildest dreams. If we consciously choose to love others--even when they're not very loving toward us--it will bring immeasurable peace, joy, and contentment to our lives, not to mention showing them how it's supposed to be done. And when we see ourselves the way God sees us--as His precious, highly-valued, deeply loved children who He thinks the world of--we will have a renewed sense of purpose, acceptance, and self-respect.
It did me no good to learn how to dance if I never dance. It does us no good to learn how to love if we never love.