The Most Excellent Way

Heart

Funny, as my regular Bible reading landed on 1 Corinthians 13, I kind of wanted to skip it. I mean, good grief, I’ve read it or heard it 10,000 times. But something curious happened as I read the final verse of 1 Corinthians 12. Here’s what Paul says: “And now I will show you the most excellent way.”

Really, Paul? That’s a pretty big offer. Can you deliver on that? The most excellent way? Not a really good way. Not even a great way or an excellent way, but the most excellent way? I really want that. I really want to embrace the most excellent way. So what is it?

First, he tells us a few things it ISN’T. And I’m glad he does, because I might’ve confused some of those for the most excellent way. Really.

What if I could speak and understand, not only the languages of humans, but also angels? Without love—nothing but noise.

What if I were gifted with unlimited knowledge and the ability to sort through information and solve mysteries? Without love—meaningless.

What if I had the capacity to trust God completely, regardless of threats or obstacles? Without love—useless.

Suppose I give away all of my money and my stuff to help the poor? Without love—worthless.

So, what IS the most excellent way?

LOVE. Selfless concern for the welfare of others. (NIV Study Bible)

Breaking it down, Ladies . . .

What if my house is perfectly clean, organized, and decorated? What if my kids are impeccably dressed, make straight As, and have the exact right friends? What if I excel at both my home life and my job? What if I get the promotion that everybody in the office is vying for? What if I plan and pull off the perfect party? Without love, no one is impressed. It’s all worthless. It’s nothing.

I can strive to be perfect, or at least appear perfect. But it’s never truly accomplished. Love, however, never fails, never ceases, never passes away.

Love brings benefits that go far beyond impressions and impressiveness. Love brings rich relationships, peaceful homes, freedom from striving, smiles on faces, joy that’s deeper than happiness, and a “no regrets” life.

Yes. Jesus is the only perfection. Jesus’ way is love. Let’s stop striving, and just focus on loving. It’s the most excellent way.

Comments

  1. Stephanie B. says

    wonderful reminder that love is more important than a “perfect” house! So hard to let go of that desire for clean floors sometimes… thanks for the encouragement!

  2. Courtney says

    How I haven’t seen ur blog ever I do not know. As IO leaders and walking thru fostering together to see where God has us there. This (and the blog about little things in marriage & the bar stoll) hit home hard rounding into day 8 of stomach bug snowed in at our house. A simple thanks seems inadequate. But thanks and much love!;) Keep it coming!

  3. Tifani Thompson says

    I LOVED this reading you wrote! Pastor Andy’s words about love is always stuck in my head…”If we would just get this one thing right”,,,,”LOVE ONE ANOTHER”. Loving one another takes care of everything. We all want the most excellent way! God’s blessings are the best! Thank you for sharing this! You encourage us all! Keep writing and sharing!

  4. says

    I cannot believe that I’m late to the party in discovering your blog. Oh so many years, I have listened to Andy’s podcasts and longed to “hear” your words via the internet, too.

    Thank you for these words & the words you’ll blog in the future. I can’t wait to sit under your wisdom!

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