love

Without Love, We Are Nothing

If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I am nothing. If I understand all mysteries and have all faith so as to move a mountain and have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have and deliver my body to be burned and have not love — nothing (see 1 Corinthians 13:1–3).

So, I just don’t get excited about behaviors in and of themselves. If you see somebody laying his life down, that might be a good thing or it might not be a good thing. If you see somebody giving away all of his money to the poor, that might be a good thing. It might not be a good thing. God has to enter in here. How do you feel about God? Why are you doing this? What does it have to do with God? It might be sheer idolatry of the poor. So, I’m just not into behaviors as the goal. I’m into God and how you are passionately engaged with him. And if I see your behavior as expressing that, then I will see that whole and love it and worship him with you for it.

Here’s another one. These are just texts showing you why I don’t go that direction. This is 2 Corinthians 9:6–7: “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” So, I say to my people, I don’t want your money. I want your cheer in your money. But if I have to choose, keep your money, because God says, “Look, this writing of checks business, it’s nothing. I want your heart. And if I have your heart, you’ll write the check in appropriate ways.”

Source: John Piper |Desiring God