When I started to write this article, I had some specific ideas in mind. However, earlier I was reading this book about love, and I came across 1 Corinthians 13 where the writer was exploring the different characteristics of love. I thought to myself: “I have heard enough lessons on 1 Corinthians 13. I have studied that passage of scripture in French, Creole, English and Greek – I have preached on it several times, taught several Bible classes on it, and read it at several weddings and once at a funeral.” So, my “preacher-self” thought, “What could I possibly learn that I already didn’t know.”
            That was a spirit of arrogance in me, because the next few chapters I read humbled me. Sometimes, it is not about learning something new – it is about being reminded of what we already know but fail to put in practice every now and then. Beloved, I felt compelled to keep on reading, and I feel compelled to write about love and encourage you to spend some time with 1 Corinthians 13 – it will edify your soul. Those of you who are familiar with this passage of Scripture, I beg you not to think it is redundant nor allow the spirit of arrogance to stop you from reading it again and again. Because it is always the right time to talk about love – It is always the right time to love – It is always the right time to be reminded of God’s love.

            To fully appreciate Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 13, we need to me mindful of the context and the reason why he wrote this letter (1 Corinthians). Paul was instrumental in the establishment of the Corinthian Church (3:5-17), and he genuinely loved that Church. Over time, people started to fight among themselves within the community, as they dealt with many issues that can be divisive (money, marriage, sex, law, judging people, worship, dress code, role of men and women, spiritual gifts, etc.). Paul spent 12 chapters teaching them on these matters, and at the end of chapter 12 he said, “Let me now show you a way of life that is best of all.” Then Paul introduced his audience to the answer to all their problems, LOVE. Paul started by saying “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.”
            Basically, Paul wanted them to understand – he wants all of us to understand that we are nothing without love. Whatever we do in life means nothing without love. Whatever we may accomplish in life means nothing without love. Whoever we become in life means nothing without love – unconditional, genuine love. Love is the best way to live life, because it is the one thing that can really binds us all together in perfect harmony (Colossians 3: 14). And the reason why love can bind us together in perfect harmony it is because “Love is patient, love is kind. Love does not envy, love does not boast, love is not proud. Love does not dishonor others, love is not selfish, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails.” These are qualities that we all need in life.

Beloved, the best way to live life, the best way to live together, is “LOVE.”  Everything must stem from our love for God and our love for one another.

I love you all,
Donny Pierre

Posted in Donny's Corner.