When I was growing up in rural south Alabama, one of my 7th grade teachers made us memorize I Corinthians 13. Today, I can’t quote the whole chapter, but I can quote part of verse four: “Love is patient, love is kind.” I try to live by this verse.<br class=”blank” /><br class=”blank” />
And as we are all horrified by the Boston Marathon bombing, maybe we can take comfort in the very fact that there is a Power greater than all the evil in the world. He is neither unaware nor uncaring. <br class=”blank” /><br class=”blank” />
God didn’t cause the bombings (see I Cor. 13:6)… an evil person/people chose to cause the bombings. The evil that happened this past Monday is one reason that Jesus came to earth to die on the cross: because we live in a broken world, and because God is the source of all that is good—all that is beautiful and kind. He is the source of love. He wrote the book on love. <br class=”blank” /><br class=”blank” />
1 Corinthians 13 (NIV)<br class=”blank” /><br class=”blank” />
1 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.
2 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.
3 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.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,
10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.
11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.
12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.