There was a special Valentine's theme this week at Café, and Marc & Leslie Smith were our guest speakers!
They talked about love, and the kind of love that the Bible challenges us to live out. While romantic love is usually associated with Valentine's Day and is essential to any great marriage, the love mentioned in 1 Corinthians 13 requires a lot more of us. It requires maturity, grace towards others, humility, and selflessness.
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.Marc & Leslie shared some great stories about their kids, and how their kids teach them more about what this kind of love looks like every day. Sometimes it's easy to love people (when they're being sweet/fun/well-behaved), but other times it can be challenging (when they have stomach viruses/pee on the floor/playfully hit you harder than they probably should). The important thing, though, is that we choose to love others above all else because that's exactly what Jesus did for us.