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Where is love after Valentine's Day?

St. Valentine as depicted by Jacopo Bassano
St. Valentine as depicted by Jacopo Bassano
Public Domain

Valentine’s Day 2010 has come and gone. The annual expression of love is now a memory. Love however, must endure far beyond a single days’ expression. Love as a tangible expression of a deeper feeling must extend far beyond chocolate hearts, cards or going out for dinner.

An everyday love
Paul deals with the issue of love and its expression in 1 Corinthians 13:1-3. There are two important concepts that can be taken from Paul’s words here in chapter 13. The first concept is that those without love are just noisemakers; a resounding gong or clanging cymbal. The second is that those without love are nothing. Two concepts with very clear applications.

The gong show
Love is not like a noisy gong or the continual crashing of a cymbal. Both the gong and the cymbal have a wonderful tone when used in conjunction with other musical instruments. Gongs and cymbals have their place in the arrangement, but when they are used out of place the resulting sound is grating. Love is never grating. Love is a well-played symphony which is showered upon another person.

Nothing means… Nothing
Paul’s words regarding being nothing without love hardly need extra commentary. When Paul says we are nothing without love, he means we are in fact nothing. High position, wealth, and other socioeconomic indicators have no bearing when it comes to love. Take a look at 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. This is God’s definition of what love is. To miss, or worse yet, to ignore God’s definition of love means we miss the greatest privilege of life. To love someone else with biblical love is to live life to its fullest.

Love is what you give – not what you get
God intends for us to love. God so wanted us to love that He placed the very definition of love in the Bible. Love is not a duty. Love is not an emotional high. Neither is love compulsive or possessive. While Valentine’s Day has passed for 2010, God’s desire for us to love each other can never is awarded a single calendar day. Every day is Valentine’s Day when love, according to God, is our attitude and practice.


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