Tuesday morning, before I took my shower, I watched a heart-warming news story about the way healthcare workers were celebrating the patients who overcame Covid-19 by singing to them as they were discharged from the hospital. After my shower, I was heart-broken to hear how some nurses are being evicted from their apartments because the management considers them to be a health risk to other residents because they might have been exposed to Covid-19. I went from celebrating the goodness of the human spirit, to wanting to shake people for acting in fear.
I wrote the following as my Tuesday Facebook message. I pray we all find the strength to respond to all through the lens of faith, hope, and love.
Peace and persistent prayers,
Sometimes Up, Sometimes Down
Sometimes the news I consume lifts me up and speaks to me of the beauty of how people are living their lives as examples of Christ-likeness. Sometimes the news I consume makes me angry for how people allow fear to dictate how awful they treat others. Even today, I’ve encountered stories of both sorts.
Let’s make a pact. Let’s agree that when we feel ourselves giving in to fear, and considering making plans to take care of ourselves at the expense of someone else, we will remind ourselves of the “Love Chapter” in 1 Corinthians. Specifically, let’s ask ourselves if what we are going to do matches up with verse 13.
“And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”
1 Corinthians 13:13 King James Version (KJV)
“I may speak in different languages of men or even angels. But if I do not have love, then I am only a noisy bell or a ringing cymbal. I may have the gift of prophecy; I may understand all the secret things of God and all knowledge; and I may have faith so great that I can move mountains. But even with all these things, if I do not have love, then I am nothing. I may give everything I have to feed the poor. And I may even give my body as an offering to be burned. But I gain nothing by doing these things if I do not have love.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous, it does not brag, and it is not proud. Love is not rude, is not selfish, and does not become angry easily. Love does not remember wrongs done against it. Love takes no pleasure in evil, but rejoices over the truth. Love patiently accepts all things. It always trusts, always hopes, and always continues strong.
Love never ends. There are gifts of prophecy, but they will be ended. There are gifts of speaking in different languages, but those gifts will end. There is the gift of knowledge, but it will be ended. These things will end, because this knowledge and these prophecies we have are not complete. But when perfection comes, the things that are not complete will end. When I was a child, I talked like a child; I thought like a child; I made plans like a child. When I became a man, I stopped those childish ways. It is the same with us. Now we see as if we are looking into a dark mirror. But at that time, in the future, we shall see clearly. Now I know only a part. But at that time I will know fully, as God has known me. So these three things continue forever: faith, hope and love. And the greatest of these is love.”
1 Corinthians 13 International Children’s Bible (ICB)