Love “beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:7
“Love never fails”
Love, every person seems to have their own definition or interpretation of this word. It’s interesting to think that perhaps we could have never existed yet here we are, being. We are privileged enough to live, to be, to love. My philosophy about life is that it is all about the people and love. God’s love for humanity, our love for each other- relationships, serving, helping. Without that, life is nothing.
Love is something so incomprehensible and powerful at times. There’s a story that I love by O’Henry that depicts pure love. His story takes place in the 1900’s in Paris, where a young mother is sad and desperate because her daughter had been diagnosed with Tuberculosis. It was basically a death sentence. The doctors told the mother that if the young girl kept her spirits up, it may help her survive the winter. The mother tried to get her school teacher to give her private lessons but the teacher refused.
Day after day, the girl looked weaker and sadder. The girl one day told her mother that she had been observing a vine outside of her window. Because it was winter the leaves were falling off. The girl concluded that when the last leaf fell, she would die. The vine was a symbol of her life.
One day the mother saw the girl looking up at one of the apartment balconies where a young artist was painting the Paris skyline. The mother was so excited to see her daughter’s spirits lifted that she went and spoke to the young artist offering to pay him for private art lessons for her daughter. The young man decided to help this desperate mother free of charge.
He taught the girl many things. One day he noticed she was sad and he asked her what the matter was and she explained the vine. It had only three leaves left. He laughed a bit and told her that it was a silly association, but she remained gravely serious. The young artist told the girl that his work was going to be exposed in America and that he’d be gone for a while but she had to live so he could come back and teach her more things. She melancholically told him that she probably would not be alive by the time he returned.
When the young artist left, all the leaves had fallen except one. No matter what happened, rain, or shine that leaf clung tightly to the vine. The mother and daughter were amazed. Spring came and the young artist returned. He notified the girl to go up to his apartment to get new brushes and paints he had bought her. The young girl was healthy and vibrant. When the girl made it up to his apartment she looked out the window and noticed that beside the vine, there was a leaf painted on a brick. Her leaf. Her friend, the young painter, had painted her heroic leaf.
Jorge Bucay asks, “Are we capable of loving like this? Are we capable of painting leaves on bricks to inspire and comfort those who we love, even if they are far?” 36 (translated from Spanish)
I think we all must find this true meaning of love and make it ours. We need to love like this. How can we love with love so great? There is only one way. We must go to the source of love, He who is love, He who loved us first.
God’s great love took Him to give up His only son for us. Jesus died on Calvary because of love.
No matter what you are going through in life, whether it’s rain or shine remember: “For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Je’sus our Lord.” Romans 8:38,39
God has given us this power to love. 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” We are to reflect His love with others.
I pray that, “Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,” may come to know, “the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with the fullness of God. Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto Him be the glory in the church by Christ Je’sus throughout all the ages, world without end. Amen.” Ephesians 3:17-21