1) 1 Corinthians 13:3b (MSG); 2) 2 John 1:6 (NCV)
1) So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love. 2) And love means living the way God commanded us to live. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is this: Live a life of love.
These 2 verses have a lot to say about love. No matter what I say, believe or do, I’m bankrupt without love. I looked up ‘bankrupt’ and it means “completely lacking, impoverished or depleted.” So everything I do and everything I say is “completely lacking” and “impoverished” unless I do it or speak it in love, even if what I am doing is a good thing. For example – it is good to give to others who may be in need, but if I do it resentfully, or even just dutifully, without giving in love, my actions are as poverty-stricken as their wallet may be! Doing and saying everything in love is a hard ask! I know that I fail in this many times each day. Sometimes I act selfishly, sometimes I act in anger or jealousy, sometimes I just act mechanically, doing whatever seems to be the most efficient timewise, without taking the time to love.
What is the opposite of being bankrupt in love? The answer is in the second verse above. God commands us to live a life of love. That means choosing to love in everything we do and say, not just when we feel warm towards others. In fact, we are showing more love if we choose to act lovingly when we don’t feel like it, than when we do. How do I do this? I think it starts with loving God and asking him to give us his everlasting and complete love for others. It is making a commitment every day to look for opportunities to love others and then choosing to act on them. How often do I think of doing something which I know will bless someone else, but then run out of time (not prioritise it) or not bother (act selfishly)?
Heavenly Father, thank you for your absolute and complete love for each one of us. Please help me to follow you – to see the opportunities you give me to show love to others, and to take them. Please work in me Holy Spirit, so I can grow in knowledge and depth of love.
Written by Megan Cornell