“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13
“Love’s the only thing that there’s just too little of.”
Don’t we display a gamut of beliefs as a nation? No, I’m not talking about we the citizens of America. I mean Christians, saints, beautiful-footed messengers, witnesses to salvation, bearers of good news, church of the First Born, priests of the kingdom, children of The Lord. Believers.
Paul sure ran that gamut in his first letter to the believers at Corinth. Could he have known the words would resonate through millennia? Are you a Spirit-filled, tongue-talking advocate of the gifts and manifestations of the Holy Spirit? Gotcha covered. Are you a Word of Faith disciple whose days begin and end with confessions that move mountains? This letter is to you. Maybe you’re a self-sacrificing lamb of God who believes you’ve done nothing worthy of so great salvation until you’ve given it all, including your physical life. Paul was reading, rather writing, your mail too.
In other words, Paul wasn’t addressing only those carnal Corinthians. The Lord was corresponding with you and me. Specifically. You. Me. Us. What is the message? Pretty simple: It doesn’t matter much what you do; there isn’t any profit in it unless it’s done out of love.
Is it any wonder Paul put a premium on love? After all, Jesus Himself said all mankind would know we are His disciples because of our love for one another (John 13:34-35). Hmmm. Only that. He did not cite another way the world would know. Not by miracles. Not by faith. Not by sacrifice. Love is all you need.
Love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8). We ought to promote it feverishly because, Beloved, we own a multitude of sins.
Love drives faith to action (Galatians 5:6). Beloved, we need more action.
Love is the juice in the Vine (John 15). Beloved, we could use quite a lot more “juice” (influence).
How is it that so very much of our airtime is devoted to so much else besides love? Is our collective eye on the ball? Shouldn’t we be talking about love more than faith? Or spiritual gifts? Or sacrifice? Certainly more than principles.
Love calls lost children home. It accepts.
Love redeems broken friendships. It doesn’t hold a grudge.
Love soothes the rawest wounds. It is the Balm in Gilead.
Is there no balm in Gilead? (Jeremiah 8:22) Is there no love on the mound of witness to the Lord?
There is, of course. But is there enough?
Beloved, we are in this together.
It’s high time we ask ourselves, “What then must we do?”
© Melissa Kay Simonds