“Love never fails.” 1 Corinthian 13:8
Since this is the month we celebrate Valentine’s Day I thought a discussion regarding “Love” would be appropriate. First, you need to know that I believe this is one of the most misunderstood words in the English language. I’m not going into the fact that there are three different words used in the Bible for love or how weak the English language is when it comes to that word. I’m sure you’re all familiar with the basics and have probably heard numerous sermons and read numerous books on the topic.
Allow me to ask you a question. What do you think the opposite of “love” would be? Most would answer “hate.” If I may be so bold allow me to offer my opinion. I believe the opposite of love is selfishness. Why do I believe that? Because Jesus says this: “No greater love has a man than this, that he lay down his life for a friend.” (John 15:13) So if the greatest love I can offer is to lay down my life wouldn’t the least love I can offer look like me protecting myself, my wants, and my desires? And don’t we call that selfishness?
You see my friends we ALL are born selfish. Don’t believe it? If you’re around small children what are usually two of their first words? MINE! NO! David says in Psalm 51 “in sin I was conceived.” I know that no one likes to look at that but as we look around the world today isn’t that the underlying issue at hand in almost all of our problems? People wanting power? Selfishness. People wanting things their way? Selfishness. People hurting others to advance their agenda? Selfishness. Crime? Selfishness. And maybe the saddest one of all, people hurting themselves and others because they think they know how life is supposed to work for themselves and everyone around them. Selfishness.
I believe the ONLY cure or maybe a better word would be moving forward from this selfishness is…..JESUS. In Galatians 5 it says the fruit of the Spirit starts with love. The very first thing we start to experience as we draw closer to Jesus and a little further away from “self” is LOVE. How cool is that? You see, I can’t love God and I can’t love others if I am CONSUMED with worrying about what I think I need and want. Those two worlds will ALWAYS collide. And here is the craziest thing of all! When I finally surrendered what I thought I wanted and needed to God and started to try, however difficult and falteringly at first, to live for God and others I found a life I never dreamed possible full of love and joy and peace! It’s amazing.
So there’s your “real” Valentine’s Day. Give it a try today, tomorrow, and the next day. Because if you’re anything like me you probably have realized that my way doesn’t, hasn’t, and never will work. God’s way does. Pray for LifeQuest as we strive to lay down our lives for the youth of New Mexico so that maybe someday in the future they might lay down their life for someone else. Thank you for your support and your prayer.