Focus Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13: 4-10, 13 (NKJV)
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. … 13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
No one knows for sure, but it has been said that love conquers all. And the greatest love I know is the love of God through Jesus Christ. In fact, Jesus instructed us to love God first and then to love each other and self. Furthermore, scripture tells us that love never fails, and that love is a more excellent way. But that’s not all.
In an often-overlooked phrase in 1 Corinthians 13:6 the scripture says that love “rejoices in the truth.”
But what does truth look like? It is difficult to define truth precisely. People often find themselves renegotiating its essence in the face of diversity. I would go so far as to say that this kind of renegotiation is something that people devote their whole lives to as our world changes and old paradigms morph into new things we don’t understand or recognize readily.
I submit to you that no one is wise enough to know the Full and Unadulterated Truth. Only God knows. But by the grace of God we are given the Spirit of Truth, which will guide us to all understanding. The Spirit of Truth will help us figure out how to accept, respect, and honor each other. The Spirit of Truth will give us the strength and the wherewithal to communicate, commit and compromise when necessary.
Not only that; the Spirit of Truth will help us recognize what is good and right and true, regardless of the circumstances. If we follow the Spirit’s leading, we will be able to see the best in each other and cherish each other with all the capacity God has placed in us to love one another. And once we can love in this manner, our hearts will be made glad, because love “rejoices in the truth.”
Precious God, thank you for love and the Spirit of Truth. Love has been your most precious and greatest gift to us. Help us to recognize that it is a more excellent way! Amen.