Come Follow Me | John 14 to 17 -“Continue Ye in My Love” | BYU Studies

Adam Miller on Love | Deseret Book’s “Questions Worth Exploring” | LDS Living



If I spend my life trying to be loved, trying to earn love, even God’s love, I will always fail. But I won’t fail for the reasons I think. I won’t fail because I’m not good enough or smart enough or strong enough or perfect enough to be loved. No, I’ll fail because I’m wrong about what love even is. I’ll fail because it’s impossible to earn deserve love. Working this way, I’ve got the whole thing backwards. I’ve got the whole thing upside down. I’m trying to go north by heading south. I’m trying to go straight by driving in circles. It’s impossible to get there this way. It’s natural to want love. And wanting love, I’m not wrong. In fact, I’m exactly right. But love isn’t even the thing that can be deserved. Yes, love can be given, love can be made, and especially really love can be shared. Love is real, but love cannot be gotten. Love is something I must do. Love cannot be deserved. Love is always a commandment to be obeyed. A full stop. And never a prize to be earned. Love is a verb, not a noun. Love is Allah, not a reward.

As long as I treat love as a reward, I will never find love. If I want to find love, if I want to be saved, this is what I must learn. Love isn’t about being loved. It’s about loving. Love requires my participation, not my perfection. We are then commanded to love, not to earn God’s love. Which commandment, though, are you trying to keep? When you roll out of bed in the morning, what are you trying to do? Are you trying to love or are you trying to earn love? I suspect I’ve spent the better part of my life, trying and failing to obey a commandment that God never gave. But there is no commandment in all of scripture delivered by any prophet from any pulpit in any age to make myself into someone that God could finally love. There is no commandment to make myself into someone perfectly lovable. It’s impossible to keep this commandment, this imaginary commandment, to be perfectly lovable because God never gave it. And for the same reason, it’s impossible to break this commandment. It’s impossible to break a commandment that God never gave. There is instead always and only the single eternal unconditional commandment to do love’s work, to love God with all of my heart, and then to join God in the work of loving others.


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