“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Deut. 6:4-5
This is the Shema, the most important verse of Scripture in Jewish worship. It is also the passage Jesus referred to as the greatest commandment in the Law. (Mark 12:29-30; Matt. 22:37; Luke 10:27)
If this is the greatest commandment–the most important thing I can be doing in my relationship with God–how am I doing? I love the Lord, but do I love Him with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength?
When I read Dennis Hollinger’s book, Head, Heart & Hands, I realized that his claim that we must exercise a balanced faith of the Head, Heart & Hands was based on the principle that we are to love the LORD our God with our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Through his studies, Dennis Hollinger found that there are three ways in which we, as Christians, express our faith: through our head or thoughts, through our heart or passions, and through our hands or actions. For most of us, one of these areas comes very naturally but the others tend to be neglected, causing our faith to be lacking. Recognizing this, we can take steps to correct the imbalance by practicing the spiritual disciplines which strengthen our faith where it is weak.
As a church, this is an area we can help and encourage one another. Corporately, we can provide opportunities to exercise a balanced faith. Individually, we can help one another recognize the dimensions of Head, Heart & Hands we express most often, making us aware of the areas we may have neglected.
Let us encourage and admonish one another to love the Lord our God with our heart, soul, and might by practicing a balanced faith of Head, Heart & Hands!
“…head, heart and hands all play a significant role in our Christian faith… each dimension plays a vital role in the expression of the others. Our minds, passion and actions interact in such a way that unless all three are present and nurturing each other, we are less than the people God created us to be.” Dennis Hollinger
[For more information, read Dennis P. Hollinger’s book, Head, Heart, & Hands: Bringing Together Christian Thought, Passion and Action. Downer’s Grove: InterVarsity Press. 2005.]