Love is the Starting Point of All Religion

Love is the Starting Point of All Religion. So how do we effectively spread love? American Philosopher Richard Weaver observed:

It seems to me that the world is now more than ever dominated by the gods of mass and speed and that the worship of these can lead only to the lowering of standards, the adulteration of quality, and, in general, to the loss of those things which are essential to the life of civility and culture.[1]

path, lead, righteous, snow, Christ, disciple

What path do you take to love?

I am afraid that within Christianity we have sacrificed some sacred things on the altars of mass and speed. An assumption has been made that the larger the ministry and the faster a ministry grows, the more God is blessing. Because of this, churches feel the pressure to produce sizable results quickly.

The problem is that loving relationships, which are to be the mark of the followers of Jesus, cannot be made in mass or quickly. To seek to maintain too many relationships or to try and speed up the relational building process will inhibit the love you are longing to experience.

Although counter intuitive, love limits in order to multiply. When a man says, “I do” to his wife, he says “I don’t” to all other women and when a couple decides to have children they choose a lifestyle that seems confining in comparison to their friends with no children. We willingly set margins around our family so that love will multiply to future generations because to neglect a marriage leads to divorce and to be inattentive to a child results in a wounded person, both of which breaks the love continuum.

Christianity accepts the setting of boundaries to effectively love our families, but for some reason we do not carry over that same principle to our friendships and ministries.  What we see as “inclusive” may actually be disingenuous, for example, promising love to people if they join a small group ministry, but then not being able to deliver on that promise due to the high volume of people our ministries generate.

When Jesus said, “follow me” to each of his disciples, he was saying to them, “I want to spend extended time with you.”  Jesus chose to spend three years with a small band because he was not only going to instruct them about love but he was also cultivating the group so that they could experience a community that loves one another.

To not limit the number of relationships in my life inhibits the multiplication of the gospel. It will be by our conviction to love a few well that there will be a continual multiplication of love for generations to come.

[1] Richard M. Weaver, “Ideas have Consequences” (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1948), p. vi.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *