The Best is Love

 

Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it can’t have. Love doesn’t strut, doesn’t have a swelled head, doesn’t force itself on others, isn’t always “me first,” doesn’t fly off the handle, doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, doesn’t revel when others grovel, takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, puts up with anything, trusts God always, always looks for the best, never looks back, but keeps going to the end… We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it as clearly as God sees us, knowing Him directly just as He knows us! But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.

(1 Corinthians 13: 4-7, 12-13 MSG)

Even better than faith or hope, God’s word describes love as “the best”. How can that be? Because love is where everything begins. At the root of grace, salvation, redemption, healing, mercy… everything that allows us to survive this world, the root of all these is love because GOD IS LOVE (1 John 4: 8). He is the beginning, so love is the beginning, He is the end, so love is the end.

So many of us live as though we are unlovable or unloved.  We have a place in our hearts that is desperate to believe, even for a moment, that someone truly loves us, completely and unconditionally. Friends, Jesus is the answer. Because the gap between God and us was sealed by Jesus, believing in Him means full and complete access to the greatest love of all. Love that is all consuming, never failing, constant and continuous. Love that restores souls, relationships, and lives. Love that is beyond all suffering, pain, and circumstances. REAL Love.

Having real love brings with it the responsibility of loving others. 1 Corinthians 13 can only be achieved through Jesus, but praise God it CAN be achieved! This month you will have an opportunity to see love in action. From marriages and relationships to suffering and triumph, love is the thread that runs through the lives of all believers and that is what you will read in every story written by this month’s authors. I know life is hard, my friends. So today I want to remind you that GOD LOVES YOU. Now, let’s show that love to someone else.

“…for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.”

 

Carissa Hardage