And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13

Take a few minutes and read 1 Corinthians 13.

John 3:16 might be the most famous verse in the Bible, but 1 Corinthians 13 is likely the most famous chapter in the Bible. You might have heard it read at a wedding or a funeral. Jesus emphasized that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord, and the second greatest is to love your neighbor as yourself. This chapter, too, reminds us that love is central to the way of Jesus. Without love, we have nothing.

This week we have learned that “You have a part to play and are gifted with the power to play it.” God has invited his people to participate in his actions in the world. He then supports that commissioning with the power of the Holy Spirit, but this chapter tells us HOW to participate. How do we know if another person or we are playing our part by the power of the Spirit? How do we know if we are on task? The answer is simple; it’s love. There is no law against love. How are you doing?

Even as I write, my shame rises because I know how often I have failed to love. Shame is not the aim of this chapter or this reading. Remember that the only way we can truly show love is by receiving it from God. God loves us first.

Take a moment to reread the chapter, but this time, anticipate the reality that God fulfills this chapter toward you. Let that be your motivation to grow in love for others. That source of hope is the only way to sustain a life of love.