If I Love
Mark 12:28-31; Corinthians 13
With all of your heart
With all of your soul
With all of your mind
With all of your strength.
Love your neighbor.
As you love yourself.
I hear it,
But what does it mean?
It means that there is nothing more important.
It means that even though God gives us many gifts,
The one which matters the most,
If my words are spoken,
Without thought of anyone else,
Then I am just a noise.
Useless to God.
Even if I am smart enough
To predict what the future will bring,
Even if I am clever enough
To understand the most difficult thoughts,
Even if my faith is so strong
That the biggest obstacle I face is nothing at all,
If I do it all without love,
Then God cannot touch others through me.
Even if I am so unselfish
That my belonging are like chalkdust to me.
Even if I give all that I am
To whatever purpose God has for me,
But I do it without love,
Then I have no purpose to God.
I must receive and give the greatest gift of all.
I must Love.
Love works at its own speed.
If I love,
Then I do not wish for what I cannot or should not have.
I do not trumpet my own worth,
I do not value what I do over who other people are.
I show the value of other people by my actions toward them.
When I love,
My own wishes or desires sink in importance
Compared to the needs of others.
When I love, I am easy to be around,
And I do not wish it to be otherwise.
When I love,
I do not celebrate sin, but instead I glory in the truth.
Love will put up with a lot,
Love will trust beyond reason,
Love will hope when all seems lost,
And love never gives up.
Love never ends.
Everything else in the world is temporary.
All other gifts will eventually fade away,
But not love.
Love is so hard to understand,
But God knows that.
He understands that what we can accept
Is so much less
Than what he is willing to give.
The time will come, though,
When all will be made clear.
And love will be for us
Like the air we breathe,
And it will make us complete.
When I was younger,
My habits were those of a child.
My speech, my thoughts, my actions
As I grew older, I grasped something better.
And I gave up my childish ways,
For those of an adult.
We are like that.
What we see now, what we can understand now
Is so much less than what God wants us to be.
My relationship with God,
My ability to love God,
My hope of being able to love my neighbor,
God has promised
That I will know fully what love means
And that there will come a time
When I am able to know him
Just as fully as he knows me,
When I am able to love him
With just as much completeness
As he loves me.
He has given us
But his greatest gift,
Images: Pine tree encased in ice with pine cone. The other side of the same tree, dripping as it thawed. Yesterday at the VA.