Usually when I write, it is a) because I have read something very interesting, and this is the only way I find motivation for writing. Occasionally I will hit on specific experiences in the past (way way past) and how they are relevant to today’s present. Not even a few minutes ago I read a blog that popped up as a link on my Twitter feed. Rebecca Cicione (Come&Live person) is a follower that I am constantly drawn to how encouraging, and impacting her tweets, and words are. Which 85% of Christians who tweet and write, usually write and tweet from their heart. Tonight’s post/tweet was insightful, and this is why I am writing to you.
In her blog “my life in words” starts out with the question/statement, “God loves us, right?”. In those four words, expressed with confidence, but screaming out expectation reveals the rawness of her heart. If you go over to her blog, and read, you will see the genuine heart of Rebecca Cicione. Which before we move on with the subject for the night, I will say in every Christians life there must be a time that they set aside to write. It is the only way we will a) get real b) open our hearts c) grow. As a teenage Christian in junior high all I would ever do is write in my composition notebooks, my thoughts, my worries, and my prayers. I appreciate real people who share real life, impacting stories, that can only be beneficial to the reader. (pretty sure that is a run-on) Anyways, now to get to the what Mrs. Parker (6th grade English teacher) would call the “juice” of the essay.
As I neared reading the end of her blog, my heart my directed to some verse in 1 Corinthians 13.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, and have not love, I gain nothing”- 1 Corinthians 13:1-3
- spiritual gifts/ sound doctrine- “have not love”- obnoxious, annoying
- gifts of wisdom, gifts of knowledge, gifts of discernment, gift of faith (enduring believing prayer)- “have not love”- empty, deceiving
- voluntarily giving of possessions and self- “have not love”- no spiritual benefit
All I can say is take that in, go pray, call your mom up and tell you, you love her, and come back and you can read the rest. Or heck just go, and spend the time you would reading this, and talk to your mom, or your friend that you miss, or your grandma. Time would be better spent talking to them and telling them you love them, and why.
Now, we have all read 1 Corinthians 13, it talks about what love is, and what love is not, but have you ever got down to the nitty gritty of the way of love, and what that way is? Do we truly understand the words we hold, the weight of the hearts we hold, or the cost of “not having love”? I honestly do not think most of us do. Lets start with the first verse. The spiritual gifts were present in Corinth, the audience of who this letter was written to by Paul. If we could put Platt, Piper, Chandler, Greear, Dever, Carson, and Keller times hundreds more of these guys, this is what the church would look like in their theology. They were very sound in doctrine, but love was absent. Of course where love is absent, conflict is approaching fast in the rear-view mirror. Arguments, and acts of selfishness crushed this churches body. Paul clearly states that the root of this pride is based on spiritual gifts. How the light is becoming more bright in my own room of sin. Remember when your mom tells you to clean your room, and to pick up all of your dirty clothes. You pick up everything in sight really fast, so you can continue to play on your N64. Then when she comes through checking the bathroom, and your bedroom, and even the living room, she seems to find an article of dirty clothing tucked away under the bed or behind the door? Well, this is what happens to me when I read Gods word. It is definitely a convicting thing to read what He wants of us, and even though we think we have our hidden evil deeds, and disclosed lies, He tends to shed His light on it. He reveals the dirtiness that is our heart and our mind, that we pass over as though it is not there. We tend to ignore His love, and find ourselves consumed with the love of the world, which is usually the pleasures that keeps us busy. Paul says that those who exalt in their gifts are using them selflessly rather than using them for the benefit of the church, and the glory of God. They miss the part where the church is about loving the family, namely the body of believers. Many times we get so caught up in ourselves on what we can do, we miss out on what we can do for others. The way of love is serving those around us with the talents God has shown us.
more to come on verses 2&3….