“It is love I desire, not sacrifices.”
Hosea 6: 6
I’ve read or hear these lines many times. I have often thought of them as putting sacrifices in their place.
But this morning what touched me was God’s desire for our love.
God wants us to love.
Whatever we do, whoever we are, God’s desire is love.
When I was in Assisi in February 2013 I prayed several times before the San Damiano cross before which St. Francis of Assisi received his first call.
What I felt as God’s call to me was three-fold:
Love my people.
Love the poor.
It wasn’t something that I had to do. For loving is not merely something we do.
Love is orienting ourselves outward – to what is good. What we are called to do follows. Didn’t St. Augustine write, “Love and do what you will”?
When we love, all falls into place.
But love is not easy. It’s not a sentiment. We can love people who turn us off, whose deeds we despise, whose actions we don’t understand.
But God desires our love – for God, for God’s people, and for the poor.
And that’s a good place to start living our lives as followers of a loving God.