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The More Excellent Way

Daily Reading: 1 Corinthians 12-13


Scripture Focus: Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13.7)

Devotional Thought: 1 Corinthians 13, the chapter that celebrates love, is one of the most sublime chapters in the Bible. In verse 7, Paul exults in the superiority of love over all other virtues. This is not a sentimental, superfluous love. It is, instead, a love that makes a difference in the way we interact with others.

Love...

  • Bears all things. This week I attended the funeral of a friend. In her closing days, she had told her husband, "You have been a wonderful servant to me. Other husbands would not have served as you have in these past months." He told me that he was only doing what love would do. It was not a burden but a blessing to be with her and serve her in her need.

  • Believes all things. The Corinthians were a divided and suspicious congregation. Paul reminded them that they needed to have confidence in one another. True love - the greatest spiritual gift of all - does not denigrate others to one's own advancement. Instead, love believes in and promotes the best in others.

  • Hopes all things. While love is not blind to the faults of others, it does refuse to take failure as final. Love believes that a person who has disappointed in the past may take hold of the grace of God and truly change. Love also realizes that it does not always have all the facts in a matter, so patience must be shown.

  • Endures all things. Even when disappointed beyond hope, a Christian can continue to love. The root of love goes deeper than the sting of pain.

Love indeed, is "the more excellent way" (12.31)

Prayer: Jesus, thank you that you love me unconditionally. Fill me with that kind of love by the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 32 Let them extol him in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders. 33 He turns rivers into a desert, springs of water into thirsty ground, 34 a fruitful land into a salty waste, because of the evil of its inhabitants. 35 He turns a desert into pools of water, a parched land into springs of water. 36 And there he lets the hungry dwell, and they establish a city to live in; 37 they sow fields and plant vineyards and get a fruitful yield. 38 By his blessing they multiply greatly, and he does not let their livestock diminish. (Psalms 107:32-38)

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