Sunday, March 15, 2009

LOVE… the best way

1 Corinthians 13: 1-13
Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance… Love will last forever!.

Day after day, thousands of Jesus’ followers toil in foreign lands to bring relief and the love of Christ to the severely afflicted and to the poorest of the poor. Through the context of their work, many of these laborers witness brutalities and suffering beyond huan comprehension.

In Africa, many people I meet are devoted to coming alongside the “least of these” (Matthew 25:40). They tell me they were moved to action by a pastor or speaker they heard, literature they read, or the lyrics of a song that opened their hearts and minds to the struggles people around the world face.

Upon entering the lands of the oppressed and the impoverished, these laborers testify that they are sustained by private devotion and corporate prayer. Worship music of deep spiritual truth also inspires these compassionate men and women to press on in their efforts to extend God’s justice and provisions to those who suffer. First Corinthians 13: 7-8, however, beautifully describes the best motivation of all for serving the needy – love. These verses aptly say, “Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance….Love will last forever!”

It’s possible you have heart 1 Corinthians 13 applied only to marriage. Today, consider how you might also apply this verse to loving the destitute. For example, how might you:
-protect someone who is experiencing a form of abuse?
-Trust God to meet your financial needs when you continue to give generously to the poor?
-Display hope as you spend time with someone who is suffering?
-Persevere in serving even when you’re feeling weary?
-Show love – unfailingly, even to someone whom you find difficult to like?

Prayerfully consider how you might display these forms of love to someone you encounter today. – Roxanne Robbins