Sunday, February 3, 2019

Love Never Fails

Brothers and sisters: Strive eagerly for the greatest spiritual gifts.  But I shall show you a still more excellent way.

If I speak in human and angelic tongues, but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal. And if I have the gift of prophecy, and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge; if I have all faith so as to move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away everything I own, and if I hand my body over so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, it is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth.  It bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails.  If there are prophecies, they will be brought to nothing; if tongues, they will cease; if knowledge, it will be brought to nothing.  For we know partially and we prophesy partially, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.  When I was a child, I used to talk as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I put aside childish things.  

At present we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. At present I know partially; then I shall know fully, as I am fully known. So faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.  [1 Cor 12:31-13:13]

For those of us who are not loved, but seek love and find ourselves frustrated, St. Paul’s words hit home, hit a nerve.  Love is what we all need: to love and be loved. 

We are loved by God; it’s fitting for us to give it back in return.   At present we see God “indistinctly, as in a mirror,” especially if we love as Paul encourages and defines.

Some day we will see God “face to face.”   We’d better be able to say we gave love back in return – to family, friends, those in need, strangers, and, of course, to God.

Deacon David Pierce

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