It All Comes Down to Love
One of the most famous scriptures from the Bible is 1 Corinthians 13:13, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” It is read at weddings, found on greeting cards and the threesome often make a lovely set for framed art. The three together are catchy. There seems to be no debate that love is the greatest, so therefore the other two must be important. I for one never thought more deeply about this verse other than it rang true with me.
That was until God asked me to love in a situation that I had no love to give.I had become completely depleted of love and yet was asked to love more. My honestresponse to God’s request was HOW? Immediately, He brought this familiartext to my mind. Now it wasn’t a quaint saying, it was a direction to belived. It made me stop and think more deeply about this verse for the first time.
If I had felt love for the person I was being asked to love, I could never haveunearthed the connection between the three. Instantly I could relate that I neededfaith to love this person. My faith was not in my ability to love. My faith wasnot in the belief that the person who would be the object of my love would respondto my grand gesture. Rather, my faith was in God. It had to be. It was His ideathat I respond with love. I needed faith for that. Next I discovered the brillianceof hope being part of the love equation. Before faith I had no love whatsoever,without faith I had no hope either. Faith and hope led me to love. I discoveredthe truth that faith plus hope leads to love. The epiphany came to me while standingin my kitchen gazing at a wall decoration with this greatest of messages stitchedon some cute teacups.
Later, I reflected on the love I have experienced by the giver of this revelationthat faith, hope and love are the most important and that love itself is thefoundation. I realized how much He loves me. I considered how much faith andhope it takes to love me. How does God have faith that I will respond to Hislove when there have been literally millions of times when I have totally ignoredHim? Why does He hope that I will finally see this life and my purpose as itreally is? I never realized how much faith and hope is behind God’s amazinglove.
I never thought before about the fact that God has faith. He has faith in Hiscreation. He has faith in the way He formed us and made this universe. He hasfaith that somewhere in our out of whack DNA a lot of us will believe in Him.It takes a whole lot more faith for God to have hope in so many generations ofhumans who have mocked, rejected and ignored Him than for me to have faith andhope in Him than me simply loving one unlovable person.
I guess the reason it is so popular is because it is so profoundly true. Breathein deeply of faith, hope and love and see how much better you feel too.