Bringing the Bible to today’s world is a goal for many of us. Sharon Jaynes used a familiar Bible verse (1 Corinthians 13) to bring out that love is the reason for the season in her, “1 Corinthians 13 Christmas Version.” I’ve tweaked it to apply to us at The Palms.
If we decorate God’s house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and Chrismons, but do not show love to refugees, we’re just another church more interested in image than substance.
If we work hard in the kitchen, preparing a Thanksgiving Day feast around beautifully adorned tables, but do not show love to our neighbors the rest of the year, we’re just another church taking the easy route.
If we go to carol in the care center and give all that we have to the choir cantata in God’s house, but do not show love to our homeless siblings, our songs of joy and hospitality fall flat.
If we trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday concerts and attend every worship service and Bible study in Advent but do not focus on love, we have missed the point.
Love stops watching the news to hug the child.
Love sets aside hanging lights to kiss the spouse.
Love is kind, though very tired.
Love doesn’t envy another church that has a Christmas nativity on their lawn.
Love doesn’t yell at the kids for challenging the status quo, but is thankful they are there to show us the way.
Love doesn’t give presents only to those who are able to give us ones in return, but rejoices in giving to those who may never be able to give back.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never ends.
Electronic games will break, jewelry will be lost, golf clubs will rust.
But giving the gift of love will endure!
Bee the church! My friends, Give the gift of love this season!