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Pastor's Corner: About love

 

February 14, 2020



This time of year, around Valentine’s Day, our culture is saturated with talk about love. There is a pressure to “show” or even “prove” our love by giving gifts, sending notes, professing love. Love can, if we are not careful, start to become a commodity itself, something that can be given or taken away depending on the circumstances. And this “conditional love” can make us feel alone, afraid, and sad.

The Bible has a lot to say about love:

Love God. God is love. Be hopeful. God’s love will last forever. It is more abundant than you could ever comprehend. You do not deserve it or have to earn it — it is unconditional. Love God with everything you have.

“The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love” — Psalm 103:8.

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these” — Mark 12:30-31.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” — John 3:16.

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love” — 1 John 4:8.

Love others. Be patient and kind to others. Speak the truth in love. Do not hold onto a grudge. Forgive. Do not be jealous or boast in yourself. Endure through the differences. Seek justice for all. Have empathy.

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” — John 15:12.

“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law” — Romans 13:8.

“We love because God first loved us” — 1 John 4:19.

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love” — Ephesians 4:2.

Love yourself. Be patient and kind with yourself. Forgive. You are worthy just as you are. Do not give up on yourself. See yourself as God sees you. Love is within you.

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” — Romans 8: 38-39.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs” — 1 Corinthians 13: 4-5.

“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us” — 1 John 4:12.

Friends, you are loved and you are worthy. Thanks be to God.

——

The Rev. Maggie Lewis

First Presbyterian Church, Havre

Chinook Presbyterian Church

 

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