May 2018 be the year of falling in love with God! In the last three weeks, we reflected on Real Love (Rom 12:9-21), Love is the Greatest (1 Cor 13:1-13) and The Evidence You Love God is that you trust Him (John 14:1, 15). Today we consider that we can only truly love our neighbor when we love ourselves.

Why do we have to love ourselves before we can love our neighbor? How do you reconcile Jesus' words "deny yourself" and "love (your neighbor as) yourself"?

What is love? “Love is not an action, it is not a desire or a feeling. Love is not an emotion or intention…Desire and feelings fall into the domain of impulse, not that of choice. They aim at their satisfaction, not at what is better and possibly best. Choice considers alternatives and weighs what is best. If its vision is broad enough, it will find what is good and right. If it is surrendered to God, united with his will, it will be able to do what is best. That of course is the nature of love. It seeks what is best.” Dallas Willard.

May January 2018 be the month of love...and 2018 the year of love! The last two weeks we touched on Real Love (Rom 12:9-21), and Love at Ten Years (1 Cor 13:1-13)--last Sunday being West Loop's 10th anniversary. Paul says that love must be real (Rom 12:9) and that love is the greatest (1 Cor 13:13). This Sunday, we consider what Jesus says about love and obedience (Jn 14:15, 21, 23).

Jesus says, "If you love Me, you will keep [obey] My commands" (Jn 14:15, HCSB, ESV, [NLT]).

There are so many commands in the Bible to keep and obey. Which is the most important? Which is the fundamental and foundational command for me to keep and obey?

"Love is the greatest" (1 Cor 13:13b, N.T. Wright, The Kingdom New Testament, 2011). Powerpoint: 1.7.18LoveIsTheGreatest1Cor13

My singular hope and constant unchanging prayer, even if not explicitly stated, is that everyone, myself included, will taste and know the love of God.

Exactly 10 years ago on the first Sunday of 2008, we held our first Sunday Worship Service at West Loop. 10 years ago, Grace Fitch was 4, Mary Lomahan was 5, Mary Cook was 8, Noah was 7 and Lukey wasn't born yet. Many parents--Austrias, Penas, Wadas, Hwangs, Kouadios--still had no kids. Kids born to us at West Loop in the last 10 years was such a joy! By God's grace all of my 6 grandkids were born in the last 9 years.

It is only by the grace of God that the last 10 years have been the best years of my Christian life of 38 years, if not the best years of my entire 6 decades of life. What makes everything so good? God, his goodness, grace, generosity, mercy and his infinite love.