Have you ever got a fright in the dark of night as you peer into the darkness to see what looks like a shadowy figure lurking in the shadows ready to pounce! The fright is intense and you reach out and switch on the light.. and it’s just a coat draped over a chair or hanging where it shouldn’t be.
You thought it was one thing, convinced even, only to discover how wrong you were once you chose to shine the light on it.
If you are anything like me you love to take certain information and file it away in a particular box in your brain… ready to be regurgitated back out at the appropriate moment. But then some more light is shone upon the information and you realise that you have filed it incorrectly. That information could be the way you judge a person, believe in a situation or cause, the way we live life. Take the concept of “love” for a moment:
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. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.1 Corinthians 13:4-13
When I was a child, I knew the love of my mother. When I grew up, I knew the love of a wife. When I came to know Christ, I discovered the love of God. Each year I understand in greater depth and appreciate more about love.
And yet as the Scripture above says, “Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” Today I only know “in part” what love is. But there will come a time when I stand before my Father in Heaven and I shall know fully what love is by the One who created me and knows me fully, already, right now… today!
As the Apostle Paul once prayed:
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.Ephesians 3:16-19