“If I speak in tongues of men or of angels, but do not have 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 faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all my possessions to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 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.” I Corinthians 13:1-8a NIV
A glorious sunset always displays God’s love for us!
When I was a teacher, and even when I was no longer teaching but my kids were in school, I would read these verses from I Corinthians before the school year began. It would help me gain the proper perspective, God’s perspective. In I Corinthians, Paul was talking about his preaching gifts and I tweaked it a bit for my situation.
If I impart knowledge and wisdom, but don’t have love, I am a clanging cymbal. If I have the best discipline plan, the most colorful classroom, and the most detailed plans, but don’t have love, I am nothing. Love is our first step with any person or child with whom we interact. If ever I was successful in the classroom, it was because I first loved. Children (and adults!) know when you care, and they respond.
This school year, whether you are a teacher, a parent, a student, a grandparent, a tutor, or just an observer; let’s embrace the love of God and share that great love with others. Let this school year be successful because you have the courage to show the love described in I Corinthians!
I thank God for each of you! And I thank you for joining me this week as we begin the school year with the right perspective and with love.
Blessings to all!