"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments. - Matthew 22:36-40
I have a friend who is so very different than me in many ways. She's apt to hold back her well-thought through opinions, I'm apt to speak out before I think. She's apt to ask for permission, I'm apt to say I'm sorry. She likes pearls, I like metals. Cursing would never come from her tongue while I am happy to tell you my favorite swear word. You get the picture, we're different. Yet, her love for God and her love for me is ridiculously beautiful. She will email me questions gently wondering how I make sense of topics that on which she holds a different opinion. We are both ministers and I will often get texts from her cheering me and her expressing that she is praying for me. Curiosity and care seem to be a marker of what love means in our friendship. We do not let our differences stop us from loving each other.
Love is the greatest commandment. One way we grow in love is practicing curiosity and attending to the other. Love allows another person to be themself without asking them to conform to the image of who we want them to be. Love releases control and welcomes vulnerability.
I'm so grateful for my friend who takes these words from Scripture to heart and lives love. She is an example of what Jesus taught us and inspires me to love better.