“Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”
We are created and called into relationship with God and neighbor. Christ’s commandment to love God and love neighbor guides us as we seek to be faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.
John Wesley assures us that God provides us with the grace needed to faithfully live into this commandment. The means of grace are outward signs, words, or actions that empower persons for the work of loving God (works of piety) and loving neighbor (works of mercy). Works of piety and works of mercy are individual and communal, private or public, ways of responding to God’s relational presence in our lives.
How we practice our faith is important.
There are many tools we can use as we participate in the means of grace, loving God and loving neighbor. Whether it is through worship, prayer, journaling, study, silence, fasting, or another act we are saying to God:
“This is important, I want to be in relationship and communication with you.”
The tools we use provide us with different ways to engage in relationship with our Creator. Every person learns, develops, and sharpens these tools by observing and learning from others and by practicing these disciplines over and over again. With repetition and dedication these tools provide reliable ways for us to recognize, reflect, claim, and respond to God’s presence and love.
We can find time every day for works of piety and mercy.
One way we do this is by identifying moments when we can stop and ground ourselves in God’s presence. Living with the Holy offers practical ways to create holy moments in your day equipping you and your household as you create a liturgical practice for faith formation in the home, at work, at school, and at play.