SO many directions I could go in this chapter this morning –
- Solomon’s description of loose cannons in verse two
- His review of wisdom’s value in verse eight
- The value of benevolence in verse seventeen
I think I’ll stop and think -Selah- at verse twenty-two today. The first sentence.
What a man desires is unfailing love.
What’s that look like?
Being only one person, I can only speak for myself, but I see unfailing love
- When my wife and kids brighten when they see me or hear my voice on the phone.
- When expressions of “I was thinking about you” come my way.
- When we’re in public and Brenda comes in close, hooks her hand through my arm as if to say “I’m with you.”
- When she tends to the mundane things that have to be done at home – without a moan or complaint.
- When the kids ask to use, and then put things back where they found them.
- When I’m driving along, enjoying the conversation, or deep in thought and someone says “is this our exit?” in time for me to actually make it. Sometimes it isn’t, but usually it is. 🙂
- When I hear kind words in my direction. Respect. Deference. “Thank You.”
- When they come with me and follow my lead (I’d better have asked their input on the way to that decision, though; they’re all adults, after all).
All those things are things received. Someone gives so I can be the recipient. And when it’s steady, consistent, not with-held (even when I’m out of sorts – and I sometimes am), that’s unfailing love.
I think it’s interesting that the last three words of the beloved lines about love (I Cor 13) before Paul transitions to his next subject are these: Love never fails. (1 Cor 13.8a)
I find it interesting too, that the most-quoted verse of the Bible, the favorite of many, says For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).
God loved, God gave.
I’m a Christian husband so the importance of Ephesians five is at the front of my thinking almost all the time.
5:2 … live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her…
I know how much I crave unfailing love; which means I know how much the people around me crave it, especially my family. Scripture tells me how important it is; and shows me how. So knowing how much it means, having thought about it again this morning, I am going to love. I am going to give. And I’m thankful beyond words that God has all they need on hand already. All I need to do is go to Him, pick it up, and deliver it to them, steady, consistent, not witheld, unfailing love.
(More on the idea of receiving from God for much fruit in John 15).