Tuesday, March 10, 2009

But the Greatest of These is Love: A Revelation

Well it's kind of a crazy coincidence that I have been working on spicing up my blog by designing my very own little "logo", and at the same time have been thinking about this "love" that Paul speaks of in 1 Corinthians. My whole blog is based on this one sentence from the Bible and today I had this revelation of hypocrisy. I purposely left out my little tag line (which I don't even really remember now) - "loving God and loving others" (or something like that). I left it out because as I was talking to Frank today I had a moment in my life that will definitely be a major turning point for me. Today I realized that, I don't even KNOW what "love" is. 

Now don't get me wrong, I know what love is... but I don't KNOW what love is (that's how we are going to roll with this one). Because I know that God loves me, but in reality I cannot grasp how much He really, really loves me. And I know that I love other people, but I am convinced that I don't do it well... if at all sometimes. 

Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians that - 

"Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things."

Sidenote: I heard a cool little trick is to replace "love" with your name... Carrie is patient and kind... etc. It's a very convicting tester...

So as I was talking to Frank today, we were talking about love, and he basically called. me. out. :)
He was like, "Carrie... now I don't want you to get mad here when I say this... but I think you are forgetting the biblical definition of "love" in this situation." He referred me back to this passage, and immediately, God was like, "Yes! You must know this Carrie Allen!" I started going through every single person who is in my life, and I started to evaluate how I am loving them. I had already been thinking about this quite a bit, because I was feeling a little guilty recently about how I didn't love people like I should have been. I couldn't understand why things could go so wrong when I "loved" them. But then I realized that my love for all these people in my life (and trust me, there is a list), wasn't even love at all! I mean, maybe it was love in a worldly definition, but it wasn't love according to God. 

I started to realize that I hadn't been patient or kind. And that I was sooo arrogant and rude. I always insisted on my own way, and I was completely irritable and resentful. 

Lately I have had this steady flow of people in my life who have expressed their concerns for being "in love" with a spouse (this definitely included me). There are many of us out there who are SO scared of getting hurt by "love", but then it came to me - if it's really the "love" that God speaks of, then there is nothing to fear. It won't hurt. Nothing will be painful about it. 

I think that the biggest worldly lie about love is the thinking that someone owes you something in return for whatever you do for them. I mean, yes, it would be nice for people to reciprocate with something to show that they love you, but we can't forget that it is not required. God loves the WHOLE world. He loves everyone. Some people will never, ever love Him back, but He still loves those people just the same. We need to love in the same way.

I have missed the ball here. God's greatest commandments to us are to love Him, and to love others, and I haven't been doing that very well. I am just really stoked on this for my own spiritual growth. I am going to commit myself to really mediating on 1 Corinthians 13 A LOT in the next few weeks. I will of course encourage you to do the same. I'm hoping to have more of a revelation on why love is greater than hope and faith. Logically/theologically, I know why. But I want to feel it in the depths of my soul like I feel this. 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

"I think that the biggest worldly lie about love is the thinking that someone owes you something in return for whatever you do for them. I mean, yes, it would be nice for people to reciprocate with something to show that they love you, but we can't forget that it is not required. God loves the WHOLE world. He loves everyone. Some people will never, ever love Him back, but He still loves those people just the same. We need to love in the same way."

I've been thinking about this a lot lately too, Carrie. But whereas my ponderings are like a broken kaleidoscope in my brain, your description here is perfect, beautiful, concise. Loving someone does not make them indebted to me in any way. I think I need to tattoo that on the inside of my eyelids so I can see it all day and be reminded. ;)

Love ya,
Jessie

P.s. Remember me?

Carrie said...

Thanks Jessie. Seriously, thank you.

I pridefully just keep thinking that I love people in the same way that God does... I just don't think I am because I am not focused on His directions (the Bible) telling me HOW to love.

*sigh*

How could I forget you...? ;)

How are Mondays for you?....

Carrie said...

I also love the Message Translation of this passage:

"If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn't want what it doesn't have.
Love doesn't strut,
Doesn't have a swelled head,
Doesn't force itself on others,
Isn't always "me first,"
Doesn't fly off the handle,
Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn't revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end."

blythe said...

wow, well said.

Melz said...

my attention span ran out like halfway through, but i'm sure the end was just as good as the beginning, and yes, this is amazing, i shall read the rest later once i stop twitching in A.D.D.-ness. haha

Alicia Miller said...

"There are many of us out there who are SO scared of getting hurt by "love", but then it came to me - if it's really the "love" that God speaks of, then there is nothing to fear. It won't hurt. Nothing will be painful about it."

So true, Carrie. Thanks for illuminating this passage a little more. I have been so convicted about the way I love people recently that this was encouraging and refreshing to read, knowing that others are journeying with me.

Carrie said...

Mel - Thanks for your honesty ;)

Alicia - Thanks for your thoughts.

You girls are awesome!