Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Today's C.S. Lewis' quote is:
"Love is something more stern and splendid than mere kindness." 
Kindness is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to love.  Not that kindness is bad.  Kindness is certainly an element of love.  Yet, as C.S. Lewis points out, love is so much more serious, yet grand!  

Kindness is defined by Webster as, "the quality or state of being affectionate, sympathetic or helpful."  It is good to be affectionate, and sympathetic, and helpful. But love is so much deeper and multifaceted. The Bible defines love as, 
   Love never gives up. 
   Love cares more for others than for self. 
   Love doesn't want what it doesn't have. 
   Love doesn't strut, 
   Doesn't have a swelled head, 
   Doesn't force itself on others, 
   Isn't always "me first," 
   Doesn't fly off the handle, 
   Doesn't keep score of the sins of others, 
   Doesn't revel when others grovel, 
   Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, 
   Puts up with anything, 
   Trusts God always, 
   Always looks for the best, 
   Never looks back, 
   But keeps going to the end.
The fact of the matter is that love is not always kind, just like love is not always patient. Sometimes, love actually causes pain. This may best be illustrated by Proverbs 27:6:
Faithful are the wounds of a friend,
But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.
How true this has been in my life!  In my life, when things have gotten messy, the people who have been kind to me and figuratively showered me with kisses have disappeared.  The people who truly love me, have endured the hard times alongside of me, and been willing to tell me the tough truths.  Although these people were technically less "kind", these friends were truly loving, and, oh how I am thankful for them!

As Christians, we are called to this stern but splendid love.  We are to grow deeper in that love, willing to go beyond mere kindness.  We do this because God is that way with us.  The simple truth is that God sometimes wounds us, but as the Proverb says, we can "trust" those wounds.  We can trust those wounds because He loves us so deeply and sternly and magnificently.

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