Doing things out of guilt is not the same as doing them out of love.
I still struggle with this. Sometimes it’s the guilt that gets me going, before love takes over and sustains the action.
I’d rather start out with love in the beginning, love in the middle, and love until the end.
It is love that brings value to our efforts, our gifts, our knowledge (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
This excerpt from Jerry Bridge’s True Community brings this to life. Without love as our motivation, we have nothing but a row of zeros.
“Write down, either in your imagination or on a sheet of paper, a row of zeros. Keep adding zeros until you have filled a whole line on the page.
What do they add up to? Exactly nothing!
Even if you were to write a thousand of them, they would still be nothing.
But put a positive number in front of them and immediately they have value.
This is the way it is with our gifts and faith and zeal. They are the zeros on the page. Without love, they count for nothing.
But put love in front of them and immediately they have value.”
– Jerry Bridges (adapted from J.D. Jones’s illustration in An Exposition of First Corinthians 13)
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- When I am embarrassed to be white
- It’s ugly out there