Wednesday, January 01, 2014

"By this all men will know that you are my disciples..." -- Not because of your piety or your purity or your keeping of all the rules or your doctrinal correctness or the political stands you make or the people you exclude or the perceived persecutions that you complain about. People will recognize who the followers of Jesus are by their love.

"If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails." (Paul, 1 Corinthians 13:1-8)

This is a love that cannot be manufactured by our own efforts. It is God's love that is placed deep inside each one of us and that--if we surrender to it and embrace it and allow it--bubbles up from the inside outwards. We become like sponges: sloppy with God's love and spilling it out haphazardly upon others. We love because we are beloved. We love because everyone is beloved.


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