As you read this, Lord willing I am traveling in Ireland. Foreign travel is wonderful fun, but it does have some challenges. It is especially important to be aware of any “strange” laws that you might inadvertently violate.
Did you know that it is illegal to run out of gas on the German autobahn? And in Spain, you cannot drive in flip-flops. Speaking of shoes, you cannot wear high heels at Greek archaeological sites like the Acropolis.
You cannot spit in Barcelona or chew gum in Singapore. And heaven help you if you step on any currency in Thailand. The Thai baht has a picture of the King of Thailand on it and defaming the royal family is illegal.
There is no going to the “bathroom” in the ocean around Portugal (not sure how they enforce that one) and you must not feed the birds in St. Mark’s Square in Venice. (From Global/Visas.com)
Certainly local laws need to be obeyed. But this week is a good time to review the greatest commandment/law of all. (Repeated in Matthew 22, Mark 12 and Luke 10.) You might remember the context for this command. The Pharisees were trying to test Jesus with difficult question. They asked, “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
Instead of worrying about spitting or chewing gum in the wrong place, let’s concentrate on that important law: We must love the Lord with all our hearts, souls and minds.
I am sure theologians would carefully exegete and bifurcate the differences between loving Him with our hearts and souls. But I am thinking mostly about how to love Him with my mind.
Philippians Chapter Two gives some insight when it tells us that in our relationships with one another we need to have the same mindset as Christ. And Paul goes on to define that mindset as one of humility. Making of ourselves nothing; humbling ourselves in the same manner that He humbled Himself and gave Himself up for us.
Our love for Him can increase this week as we reduce our focus on ourselves. He must increase, we must decrease. Hard to do…but much more rewarding than just wearing the right shoes on the Acropolis.
By His Grace and For His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel