He who loves Christ is bound to imitate Him to the best of his ability. Christ, for example, was always conferring blessings on people; He was long-suffering when they were ungrateful and blasphemed Him; and when they beat Him and put Him to death, He endured it, imputing no evil at all to anyone. These are the three acts which manifest love for one’s neighbor. If he is incapable of them, the person who says that he loves Christ or has attained the kingdom deceives himself. For ‘not everyone who says to Me; “Lord, Lord” shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of My Father’ (Matthew 7:21); and again, ‘He who loves Me will keep My commandments’ (John 14: 15,23)….
The whole purpose of the Savior’s commandments is to free the intellect from dissipation and hatred, and to lead it to the love of Him and one’s neighbor. From this love springs the light of active holy knowledge….
He who always concentrates on the inner life becomes restrained, long-suffering, kind and humble. He will also be able to contemplate, theologize and pray. That is what St Paul meant when he said: ‘Walk in the Spirit’ (Galatians 5:16).
~St Maximos the Confessor