How was I guilty? I got too caught up in the analytical side of the message I was giving. Instead of focusing more on my own experience to inspire others, I chose to put too much focus on how I felt others were wrong. I was more concerned about the facts and being right than having compassion for those I was criticizing.
How did I learn of my mistake? From a friend of mine who is an atheist. I was humbled and reminded that we all can learn from each other, no matter what our belief system is. For that I am grateful.
I like to fancy myself as somebody who is wise in spiritual matters. But none of that matters unless I have love for others and remain humble. I could be the wisest person on this planet; but that wisdom would be useless if I allowed the fire of God's love in my heart to flicker and die.
I love the wisdom of God. It can enlighten a person's soul and unlock the mysteries of everyday life. It can bring confidence to a person who lacks judgment and strength to someone who is weak. But love is the key that opens a person's heart to receive that wisdom. Unless we first show the love of Christ, the hearts of men and women will remain closed to the knowledge of God.
It is not impressive words that changes a person's life. Rather, it is the heartfelt honesty and passion in our testimony of Christ that transforms people. It is the beauty of God's love that tears down our defenses and melts our hearts, not the endless debating of God's laws or existence.
From this day forward, may I never again forget this truth. If you are reading this, please pray for me. I know the Lord has called me to share his love but it comes with great responsibility. I don't ever want to make the same mistake again. Thank you and God bless.
"If I speak in the 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 a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess 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. 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)