Scripture: "And now abide faith, hope, and love, these three; but the greatest of these is love." I Cor. 13: 13
I had a conversation with someone not long ago during which I apologized for some things I did years ago, things I realized as I got older that were ill-advised. The result was that the person was hurt very deeply--something to which I was totally oblivious at the time.
In making my apology, I said something like the following--"How is standing for what is right, and good, and honorable of any good effect if one forgets about another person's feelings in the process? If it was not done in a spirit of love, then it was not right. We cannot abandon those we love just because they don't live up to everything we want them to be. Heaven knows I am not and will never be all I need to be."
Further, I stated, 'The people in our lives--that is what is most important, not the letter of the law." These things were stated in the midst of tears.
Jesus said, 'By this shall all men know you are my disciples, if you have love one for another.'
I had to swallow my pride and admit that my actions and words did not portray the love of Christ, and that if one were looking for the love that proved I was, indeed, a disciple, then they would not have found it, at least not in this particular incident.
Love is the key to it all, my friends. Other gifts and spiritual graces are also important, but none as important as love.
Prayer: 'Forgive us, O God, when our lives failed to portray your love for this world that is seeking light and direction. May the words of our mouths, may the thoughts hidden in our hearts, may the actions we undertake, and may our very attitudes reflect your great love for all humanity. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.'
Song: 'The Love of God' by the Gaither Vocal Band.