When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “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.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
“Primero Dios!” It’s a popular expression among Hispanic Catholics that means, “God first!” In the countless decisions we face on a daily basis, this expression gives focus to the great commandment given by Jesus, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart.” It requires great trust that if we put God first in our lives, seeking God’s will above our own, we will find ourselves truly living a blessed life.
But to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength can only be possible if we know, deep down, that we are loved by God who has our best interest at heart.
If we know this, with constant reminders of course, we can fulfill the second part of the commandment, “to love your neighbor as yourself.”
—Fr. Dan Reim, SJ, is campus chaplain at Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, OH.
“Give me only your love and your grace; that’s enough for me.”
—Excerpt of Suscipe prayer of St. Ignatius Loyola