1 Corinthians 13 got me again the other day.

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Nobody wants to be that person. Yes, I definitely want to do the things that are mentioned. Who wouldn’t want to move mountains with their faith? Of course, I can’t imagine ever doing it without love though. Here comes the proverbial 2x4 to the forehead. God is incredibly accurate too.

You see, when I ask myself to justify that I have love I might list stuff like “telling people about Jesus, teaching, preaching the Gospel often, trusting God with provision, serving others, networking with youth ministries, developing campus ministry strategies, counseling students and adults in relational ministry, creating curriculums, serving at local Youth Ministries, etc.” Those of course are all good things. I love doing them. I’m called to do them.

But . . .

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

That’s a little more personal isn’t it? Why? Because God is personal and we, His image bearers, are too.

Frankly, it’s easier to complete the checklist of ministry tasks for people I don’t know very well, consequently keeping them at a distance. And it’s much easier than practicing “love” at home. With my neighbors. Co-workers. But isn’t that where God is glorified most? Doesn’t the world stand in awe when we are patient or not self-seeking? It blows their minds. It touches their hearts. God touches their hearts . . . through us. He becomes real to them. People need “love.” We’re desperate even.

That’s what YFC Core Teams do. We meet together to “spur one another on to ‘love’ and good deeds.” We believe God sends believers into the lives of their friends to become an expression of His love.

By: Mitch Janzen, Director of Home Front Missions, Central Coast YFC

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