Happy Valentine’s Day to me – because of the God that stole my heart. I am also beyond grateful for my wife and family for the joys and challenges allowing me to realize my progress and need towards greater love. In today’s suffocating, politicized climate arguing the rights of love, pertaining to our own bodies or with another, I am finding myself gasping to breathe the final words by St. Paul in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 proclaiming “love endures all”. Whether we believe in labeling ourselves as Christian or not, understanding the gift and weight of love given to our species deserves far more than this muddied, political banter and self-righteous opinion or belief. Love deserves our action. If love truly endures all, never fails, or conquers all, then why are you and I yelling? Although love affects all of us, it also offers us the chance to display it, not as a right but simply as a gift to give. Pure love is borne from sacrifice for another and Christ did that for us. I wish God’s love had a warning label on it as it far exceeds our understanding finding meaning only in our humility and sorrow as the heart dares to contemplate the vastness of His mercy. Christianity is not about reserving an assured room in some heavenly mansion, rather it is an opportunity to endure with diversity allowing our words and actions a chance to glow in acknowledgment of this mercy. Christianity should neither be impatient, unkind, envious, boastful, arrogant, rude, insist on its own way, irritable, resentful, or rejoice at wrongdoing. Christianity simply rejoices with the truth, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Along with the power to give love, we have been allowed the opportunity to forgive. Oh yeah, forgiveness does however come with a warning…
Dear “Christian”, if love led the King of Kings like a silent lamb to slaughter, action, not simply preaching, also awaits our next step towards this gift of greater love.
Abandon yourself to true love,
Beware for soon the Perfect comes,
And alone His voice will be heard,
Judgment will beat from holy drums,
we’ll see ourselves no longer blurred,
while lifting our eyes to the Word.
Shameful tears will flood our rivers,
Cleansing lands where hatred occurred,
The weight of sin is now considered,
Love’s pure action will deliver.
Servant’s tears will be wiped away,
By pierced hands with saving measure,
Tears that go untouched and astray,
Fill the rivers on this Lord’s Day.
Joy unspeakable for those He knew,
Despair eternal for hearts betrayed –
wherein lies, hatred and prejudice grew.
Love is an action- forgiveness our path,
Run towards His mercy not away from His wrath.
By Chris Clody 2/14/14