If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:1-3, NASB
Today is February 14th -- the day we celebrate love.
We celebrate it with many different things and in many different ways. With heart shaped boxes of chocolate candy, bouquets of flowers, Vermont Teddy Bears, perfumes, edible arrangements, beautifully worded greeting cards. With candlelight dinners for two, at home or at a fancy restaurant; taking in a special romantic movie, perhaps even going on a surprise vacation.
So very many songs have been written about love. The Beatles sang, 'All You Need Is Love.' Bob Merrill wrote 'Love Makes The World Go 'Round' for the musical 'Carnival!' Back in the day, the singing group Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers asked the musical question, 'Why Do Fools Fall In Love?', while The Monotones wondered, '(Who Wrote) The Book Of Love?'
As far as I'm concerned, God wrote the Book of Love -- The Bible. It's His love letter to all of us, His funny, flawed valentines. It speaks not of a fleeting, fickle, romantic love, but of a deeply committed love. A love big enough to encompass ALL of us. A love so great for those created in His image that He sent His One and Only Son, Jesus Christ, to die a cruel, harsh death on a heavy, splintery, wooden cross. A method of death reserved for common criminals. He did that out of love. For us.
An unfailing, unchanging, unconditional love.
It's unfathomable. It's amazing.
It's a love we can celebrate 365 days a year, not just today, if we choose to receive it.
It's a love that never fails.