And Jesus asked, “Do you love me?”

Psalm 26:1

        Vindicate me, O LORD,

   for I have walked in my integrity,

   and I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.

Do I really love God?

I held the Bible open and read, beginning with Psalm 27, going backwards to Psalm 26 and 25; and then returning to Psalm 26. I walked in athletic shoes, wore jeans, and a nice shirt as I circled the building, praying and lost in the Psalms on a beautiful Sunday morning before service. The blue sky and the varied yellows of the trees across the street gave every indication of fall except for the warmer temperatures. It should feel cold today. It’s in the seventies. My soul, however, feels too cerebral; cold, like a fall day threatening snow.

I’m always planning, scheming, and thinking outside the box. It’s in my nature to plan ahead, to be creative, but I can be very cerebral—head minus heart. It’s something I grew into in my twenties and something I shed in my thirties. I like balance, but today I feel off balance. A friend had confided in me how she questions her love for God. Sometimes, she doesn’t feel the words in a song and thinks singing them anyway is anything but worship. Psalm 26:1 spoke to me.

Have I walked in integrity? Have I trusted in Him unwaveringly? Have I truly loved Him?

We all make decisions in our life that don’t always align with God’s truth. We lie to ourselves and to each other and excuse it away by saying, “everyone does it.” Does that make lying okay? Does that make your choices right? Does that help or hinder your relationship with Christ? If you answered yes to any of these, you’re lying again.

I’d like to say I walk with integrity though I really don’t bandy around that word much. I feel like such a hypocrite when I say it. I line up the word integrity with God’s perfect truth. So I rewrote the verse to read:

“Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have (tried to) (walk)ed in my integrity and I have (tried to) (trust)ed in the Lord without wavering.” (Emphasis mine)

This is what prayer walks do to me when I have countless minutes to dwell on scripture. My feet are circling the building, praying for the service, the church, and I am not dressed in a dress or heels. I wear athletic shoes because I know I will walk much this morning for Him. I think hiking boots and athletic shoes portray God’s people better than high heels, like Jesus’ sandals. I think jeans and a nice shirt say to someone who has nothing nice to wear on Sunday that they are welcome. Christianity is more than an image.

I think if we are to wear the Christian label we should be ever conscious of it in our actions and words. We should not make excuses for our behavior, but work out our own Salvation by trying to live in integrity each day and walking on level ground (Psalm 26:12a); not because we live by the law, but because we love our Lord, Jesus Christ however imperfectly. So Lord, help me today to walk in integrity and trust You unwaveringly.  In Jesus Name, Amen.

Have you thought about your relationship with Jesus lately? Or do walk around on automatic doing everything because it’s become a tradition or something you swear an allegiance to? Or something you follow because everyone else is doing it?

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2 thoughts on “And Jesus asked, “Do you love me?”

  1. I am afraid I am autopilot more than I want to admit. As you emphasize, prayer so that I am aware as to God’s workings is where I should invest more time.

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