This week in church, we are studying 1 Corinthians 13 (the famous love chapter). I wish I could stand on a dais and scream, “I know Love.” Love, however, is too deep to be comprehended after a year of sermon, much less nine blog posts. It takes years, decades, a lifetime. So, this should be the final love serial. I won’t beat my chest in proud achievement. I do hope I’ve managed to leave a minute adjustment in your orientation of Love.
Imagine this: You throw half a dozen shirts, three pants, and a coat in a bag, wave bye to your family, and pick a flight to Germany. Landing in Munich, you stroll into the busy night, stop the first pedestrian on your way and communicate in German, with grace…
The said pedestrian directs you to a hotel where you make reservations, shower, and call a colleague in Milan, speaking Italian without struggle. Left with sufficient call card, you dial your mum’s number and converse in your local language (Mine is Yoruba). Done with that, you pick a book on the room’s table and give its translation in seven languages, and you aren’t a prodigy.
Or paint a scenario where you sit before the flat screen, watching a soccer match (or whatever sport you revel in) and before the kick-off whistle, you know what the final score would be, who would be injured in the match etc. Imagine you could list the Grammy winners for 2017, or the next four presidents of the United States.
What would that give you? Power, connection, fame, the list doesn’t end. With the fluency in language, career opportunities along the path of delegate, ambassador, interpreter at the UN, PA to presidents… Or that you were clairvoyant. Everyone, I mean everyone, would want you by their side. Presidents, Armies, Naval officers, Best-selling authors… I might even ask you what book to write that would instantly hit best-selling list (Kidding.)
Now imagine a man who claims all this abilities yields nothing without love. What? Who? I also asked. His name is Paul, and here is his defense speech in his words:
If I had the gift of being able to speak in other languages without learning them, and could speak in every language there is in all of heaven and earth, but didn’t love others, I would only be making noise. If I had the gift of prophecy and knew all about what is going to happen in the future, knew everything about everything, but didn’t love others, what good would it do? Even if I had the gift of faith so that I could speak to a mountain and make it move, I would still be worth nothing at all without love. If I gave everything I have to poor people, and if I were burned alive for preaching the Gospel but didn’t love others, it would be of no value whatever. (1 Corinthians 13:1-3 TLB)
His emphasis is this: Special gifts and abilities would all fade. The only thing that would remain is Love. He claims that we aren’t made perfect by what we have, but by Love. (vs 10)
I believe his claim today. I’d believe and walk in it always, knowing that when I stumble off the path of love, love would restore me. Love for God. We show we love God by obeying His commandments which is nothing more than – Love the Lord with all of you, and love your neighbors as yourself.
So, to wrap up today’s post: It matters not the special abilities we have, they are only perfected when we walk in love. I believe and always would live in this truth. Would you?