If you missed part one, you can catch up here.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
I Corinthians 13:13
Last week, I wrote about faith and hope, and how they relate to love. Faith is our confidence that God is who He says He is and that He is real, even though we cannot see Him. Hope is the roots of the soul. It is our confidence that His promises are true in a matter of time, and that Christ will return. Love is the realization of what we have faith in and hope for, primarily achieved at Christ’s return when faith and hope expire, and only the love of God remains.
I thought about these things the other night. I realized that love is not only realized when Christ returns. Rather, we experience it and express it until He gets here. Hopefully, this happens countless times everyday. Because Christ has not arrived, the love we express is driven by our faith in God.
Galatians 5:6 says, “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” When I read this verse, I imagine a car called “Faith.” It looks like the dark blue, boxy 240 Volvo my parents owned when I was a kid. I imagine that each of us drives a different car called “Faith” because our unique experiences and testimonies show how God is made real to us. Your faith might be a black Honda motorcycle, a white Honda Odyssey, a silver Hyundai Accent, or the Chevrolet Caprice you inherited from your grandfather.
Love sits in the driver’s seat of my 240 Volvo, and it moves my faith. It presses the brake and accelerator pedals, and steers. It expertly avoids accidents, and wisely knows the best route to my next destination. It’s what people see when they look through the window. It’s what people sit behind when they hop in the back seat. It’s what makes me compassionate in ways that I would not be on my own, and it corrects me when I need to operate in greater loving-kindness. It’s what drives me through this life when I’m exhausted, and I’ve been on a dark and rainy road for longer than I expected.
Together, faith, hope and love help guide us through life because each is connected to the reality of God in its own way. Of the three, love is the greatest because it is what survives eternity, and it is also what guides our faith and keeps us headed toward God’s promises for the unknown time we’re granted on this earth.