Reflection on the Didache

I had just started reading the Didache and came across this passage:

“You shall not hate any man;
but some you shall reprove,
some you shall pray for,
and some you shall love
more than the breath of life that is in you.”

And I just stopped reading.

It caught my heart. My soul wanted to scream its assent to this truth.

This is what it means to love. This is what it means to be a total gift of self. This is what we are called to do.

Some you shall love more than the breath of life that is in you.

Of course, the rest of the message is important, too. We should not hate, we should pray for others, and, yes, we ARE our brother’s keeper and sometimes that entails reproving one another, but always with love.

But it is this last part that speaks to me. God is calling me to abandon myself to Love of Other, and, in this moment, my will is beyond eager to wring out every drop of life within me — every breath in my body — to be Love, to do Love and to show Love to another. At the moment, this is particularly directed at that person whom the Lord has placed upon my heart to intercede for, on a continual basis; but I can feel, on the margins, the sense that as I grow in this, I will be called to expand my gift of love, of utter self-abandon, to others. For this is not just a gift to this one person, or to these several people, but it is ultimately a gift, if you will, to the Lord Himself. A small response to the enormous outpouring of love which he bathes me in daily.

As I have said before, “my struggles for holiness are no longer merely for my own sanctification, but because prayers of holy men and women are more efficacious (James 5:16, 1 Peter 3:12).” And so, the deeper I grow in holiness, the more I am able to truly love. The more that I can open myself to love my neighbor — love as an active verb, a decision of the will — the more my will is conformed to the Will of the Lord and the more I will be receptive to and attentive to the perpetual presence of His Love for me.

Something like this:

God loves me –> I respond with love for neighbor and God –> I am more aware of God’s love for me :||

“You shall not hate any man;
but some you shall reprove,
some you shall pray for,
and some you shall love
more than the breath of life that is in you.”

God Bless!

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