If she had one more message to preach about, it would be to encourage Christians to "love, love, and then love some more," inspirational Christian speaker Joyce Meyer says.
During a recent guest sermon at Life.Church in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Meyer explained that love is the most important thing Jesus said we have to do for ourselves, for others, and for Him.
Meyer, founder of Joyce Meyer Ministries, says that a turning point in her life was learning that it is impossible to be both selfish and happy, saying that although she didn't have financial stresses and had a good husband and children, she was unable to be happy because she was too self-involved.
Then, God spoke to her, telling her "you're not happy because you're selfish."
"It's just not possible to have yourself on your mind all the time and be happy," Meyer says.
She points specifically to John 13:35, which calls on Christians to show their faith to others through love: "By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."
Non-Christians are "not going to know us by our church attendance or by the bumper sticker in our car," Meyer explains. "The only thing that's going to convince the world that Jesus is real is if we who call ourselves Christians can learn to walk in love everywhere we go."
The evangelical leader goes on to say that Christians need to simplify their understanding of love. "Love is not a sermon, it's not a theory, it's not a book, it's how we treat people," she says.
The true challenge to being loving is to see how we treat people who cannot give us anything in return, Meyer explains.
We as Christians should ask ourselves "how do I treat people that don't have anything I want? […] that's what important to God."
Meyer references 1 Corinthians 12:31, which speaks on the overarching theme of love.
"But earnestly desire and zealously cultivate the greatest and best gifts and graces (the higher gifts and the choicest graces). And yet I will show you a still more excellent way [one that is better by far and the highest of them all – love]," the verses read, according to the AMP version.
We as Christians need an overarching theme of: "'I'm doing this because I love God, and I'm doing this because I love you.'"
This is because "anything that doesn't flow dies," and therefore God's love needs to flow out of us to stay alive.
"God's love flows to us, it ministers to us, but then it has to flow out of us, otherwise it becomes like a stagnant pool of water and our lives just begin to stink," Meyer says.
This ties in with 1 John 3:17 and the importance of maintaining an open heart of compassion through which God's love can flow to others.
"But if anyone has this world's goods (resources for sustaining life) and sees his brother and fellow believer in need, yet closes his heart of compassion against him, how can the love of God live and remain in him?" the verses read.
Meyer concludes her message by encouraging Christians to keep an open heart of compassion for others, so their hearts may serve as vessels through which God's love can flow.