John Wesley once said, “Though we cannot think alike, may we not love alike?” I could not agree more with this statement, but unfortunately in these divisive times, we all can’t even seem to agree on what “love” actually means.
So I keep coming back to an even older and yet still very good definition of love. It comes from a letter that a man named Paul wrote to a church in a town called Corinth way back in the day. Many now refer to this chapter of writing as the “love chapter” because perhaps this is still the best working definition of love out there. Whether you’re a “person of the book” or just someone trying to be a decent person, these words are worth remembering:
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.
There is a reason that many faith traditions have placed love as the highest ideal and priority. I believe only love is strong enough to heal the divisions and bring reconciliation to our world. But it will mean choosing to honor the “other” with patience, lacking pride, and not holding their faults against them.
My song “13” is my own reminder to choose love even when I am frustrated by the fighting around what love is, who is capable of doing it, or who deserves it. I will sing this song with my life, loving people not because they have earned it, but because we all need it, and that’s how we start to become the answer to our own prayers.
Much love and thanks to you!