That we must love one God only is a thing so evident that it does not require miracles to prove it.

-Blaise Pascal, Pensees


I love reading.  You name it I’ll read it—books, articles, blogs, newspapers and notes on cocktail napkins if need be.  Good writing and reporting turns me on, and I know that sounds suggestive, but oh well.  I thoroughly enjoy thoughtful conversation and dialogue. 

Truth be told, I also have an affection for good food, dogs, lakes, and art of all kinds—but not a one of them holds a candle to my passion for literature.  Of course I have my preferences—call me picky if you like, there are several genres and styles I simply can’t tolerate let alone enjoy.  But give me anything by Eugene Peterson and I’ll dive right in.  When it comes to books I dig—I can tell you a good one from a great one no problem.  When it comes to a couple of prints I have framed on the other hand, I don’t know an expensive painting from a dud.  And I haven’t always been this way mind you—although, even as a kid in elementary school when I had time to put down a baseball bat or a hockey stick I did to take in a good read from time to time (but I was sure not to tell anyone for fear I might get teased). 

There is a difference between an affection and an allegiance.  People toy with affections—they’ll die for an allegiance.

Following Jesus means being so passionate about him that we have no comparisons—no dual allegiances. Sort of in the way a young man would take a bride.  He forsakes all others.  He may have affections for another woman or two, but when he marries, he forsakes those affections.  There have been instances in which I have been reading that I get so engrossed in what I am doing (or not doing depending on who you are asking) that I have lost track entirely of everything else going on in the world—which reminds me—when we love Jesus we just don’t get all tied up in the same things that used to consume us. 

Jesus knew what it looked like for his disciples to be passionate followers of his.

 ‘You can’t worship two gods at once. Loving one god, you’ll end up hating the other. Adoration of one feeds contempt for the other. You can’t worship God and Money both.

‘If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.’   (Matthew 6:24-26, The Message Bible) 

Who is it that you love with no equal?