Love trusts and hopes all things

Love trusts and hopes all things. Trust enables us to see all things through the eyes of hope. There was a Japanese Christian man named Toyohiko Kagawa. He is considered by many as a modern Christian saint. Following his conversion, Kagawa as a young Christian activist reached out to poor neighborhoods and evangelized gamblers and prostitutes. As gamblers came to him aggressively begging for money, he often gave them money. One day, his friend witnessed thisand severely criticized him. He said “You are a hypocrite. Don’t you know he will gamble if you give him the money?” Kagawa said to his friend “I am treating them just as Jesus has treated us. Don’t you raise up a little child when he falls? Doesn’t the doctor give some patients multiple shots? Trusting someone till the end in spite of knowing that he will fall and get sick again. Isn’t that what love is?” That was Kagawa’s Christian philosophy. For him, love was an agreement to be tricked by a trickster when necessary and trust him even when he engages in trickery. The world is ready to trick us once it gets to know us. By contrast, Jesus is ready to forgive us once He gets to know us. The world attempts to trample down upon us once it sees into our malice. However, Jesus laid down His precious life on the Cross even as He saw into people’s sinfulness and ingratitude. He prayed as He was dying on the Cross “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Going to great lengths to forgive and trust mankind and patiently wait for them to be transformed. That was the love of Christ.

Apostle Paul dearly loved the Church of Corinth. As it prospered and grew, many people believed in Jesus Christ. Following Paul’s transfer to another church, however, spiritual fervor at the Church of Corinth began growing cold. There arose division, factions, and self-righteousness. Furthermore, some church members even doubted Paul’s apostolic authority and validity. As love and grace grew cold in the church, people criticized and fought one another. Not only did they distrust the apostle, but they also grew impatient and bitter towards fellow church members. Nevertheless, Apostle Paul still loved the faithful at the Church of Corinth. Thus, he advised them in the spirit of love and interpreted all circumstances arising at the church in a positive light. Hate seeks to sever all relationships. By contrast, love seeks to maintain all relationships. Whereas hate sees everything in a negative light, love sees everything in a positive light. Corinthians Chapter 13 is not a mere beautiful poem to recite. Instead, it is the profound spiritual truth Apostle Paul attained through Christ-like living and evangelizing in the foreground of spiritual warfare as well as in churches. Why do we fight our own brothers and sisters when our enemy is the devil? Because the love of God is not within us. Who is responsible for withering souls? We are. Our hearts are devoid of God’s love. We must continue to believe in those around us and hope and pray for their transformation.

There was a man named Edward Mote in London, England. Like an orphan, he had nowhere to turn to. To make a living, he had no choice but to work at a furniture factory at an early age. When he got home after long hours of work, there was no one to warmly greet him. Just to forget about loneliness, he often roamed around the streets of London. Then, one day he walked into a church and was deeply touched by the pastor’s sermon. He finally realized through the Word of God that Jesus Christ has always been with him even in the absence of friends and acquaintances to turn to. This realization completely changed Mote’s worldview. As a result, he started working diligently for the Lord. Eventually, he who once worked a menial job at a furniture factory founded a furniture manufacturing company. He was overwhelmed with gratitude for God’s love and began writing a poem under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. That poem is the text for the beautiful hymn we sing entitled My Hope is Built on Nothing Less:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name.
Refrain
On Christ the solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.
As Mote repeatedly sang this hymn, divine grace continued to touch him. Only Jesus Christ is our true and eternal hope.

Love hopes all things. That means we must look at others through the eyes of Christ’s love with patience, hope, and expectation. It also assumes that we do not look at others as fully developed and matured beings. Rather than expecting the highest from people, we must focus on their potential even amidst their weaknesses. In a relationship between a married couple, parents and children, or friends, love is instantly suspended if one person says to another “See. You’re hopeless. I give up.” Saying instead “You have so much potential. You can do it.” That is love for we are hoping and trusting in others. Love does not rule out expectations and divine intervention. Abraham believed against all hope (Romans 4:18). Love is seeing all things through the eyes of faith in Christ Jesus.

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