1 Corinthians 13:13… Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. I don’t know what version of the Bible this interpretation is from, or if someone just added their own twist to it. This morning, I just kept repeating… Trust steadily in God. Trust steadily in God. What does that mean to me? It means trusting in God at an even-keel, regardless of circumstances. Whether your life is experiencing joyful birthing of something new, or painful death of something old… Trust God steadily. When sprinting up the mountain, trembling through the valley, or simply strolling along the plain… Trust God steadily.
My emotions are all over the place. One moment I think I’m fine, another I am snapping at the kids because they’re slobs. I’ll be singing songs, and dancing around the house, and an hour later I feel down in the dumps. My life is all over the place! We celebrate my dad being cancer-free, and weeks later, new cancer is found. Our family enjoys a successful first season for our new business, and then right before our last event, the trailer’s electrical goes out. One night, I’ll be cuddling with my 16-year old on the couch watching Netflix, and the next day, we’re hashing it out, about to put the boxing gloves on!
Thank goodness for the most part, my attitude is positive, my average line of feelings on the barometer of life is in the green. I rarely find myself in the red danger of depression or fear for long. Maybe it’s because I am already practicing the art of trusting God steadily to an extent. That extent has been largely unconscious. How much more can I take life at stride if I make that a conscious mantra?
And then to follow through with the rest of the verse… to hope unswervingly, and love extravagantly? Oh man… there’d be no stopping me. My boss does this ridiculous (in a fun way) ‘Wonder Woman’ stance whenever she needs to make a difficult call. It is a stance of empowerment. When I read ‘Love Extravagantly’… I think WORLD CHANGING. FAMILY IMPROVING. COMMUNITY ALTERING. I think EMPOWERING. I think UNSTOPPABLE. I think… ‘Devil, you better get behind me! Because I am going to run you and your decisive, oppressive tactics over with this Wonder Woman stance and EXTRAVAGANT LOVE.’ Can y’all feel it??
The verse goes on to say that the best of these is love. Maybe, just maybe there is a reason love is the most important and comes last.
Maybe, just maybe… you must trust steadily in God and hope unswervingly in all circumstances, in order to be able to love extravagantly. You can’t run the devil over, or run worry out of your life, or rise above the circumstances with a church attendance record, a wall full of career awards, or a loaded bank account.
No doubt, having a steady trust in God creates the foundation that I need to be able to function the way I am called in the crazy, awesome, horrible, complicated, lovely world that I live in.
Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. The best of these three is love.