Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
What is this charity? It is true love, which we receive freely from God. We are told: freely you have received; freely give. Well, I can talk about it but what lasts is the Word itself. It’s the Word which helps me to know where I fall short. I have learned from my brothers too, who have spoken the truth to me in love and shown me the love of God. Now I also feel moved to speak to brothers. I ask for a blessing found in an old hymn, “And may we love each other with a sincere heart.”
God Himself is love and He gave Himself to us out of love, but we have often been ungrateful. Why do we hold back our love from other people? Do we imagine it’s ours to hold back?
Freely you have received; freely give.
If you buy something and talk to the cashier without love… you are a clanging cymbal, you have not bought anything worthwhile. Do you imagine they are there to serve you? Don’t you know that it is also your job to serve them?
If you talk politics or philosophy without love… you are stabbing around in the dark, why do you search for the truth so far from Christ? Can you see without light? You need to be in love, because God is love, and you must abide in Him.
Is this crazy? Yes. Is it foolish? Yes. As to people…
But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
Why do you expect anything that you do without love to be fruitful? Do you imagine those things please God? They are empty.
He does not delight in the strength of a horse; He takes no pleasure in the legpower of a man. The LORD is pleased with those who fear Him, who hope in His loving devotion.
Surrender yourself, let yourself be overwhelmed by His love. Your heart is a well. We are the woman by the well, pouring out to others the love we have gotten from God.
Do not ask yourself whether this is idealistic; ask God, and He will give you faith. We must work by faith and not by leaning on ourselves. It pleases Him so much when you do; how much He loves you!
What is your only comfort
in life and death?
That I am not my own,
but belong with body and soul,
both in life and in death,
to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ.
He has fully paid for all my sins
with his precious blood,
and has set me free
from all the power of the devil.
He also preserves me in such a way
that without the will of my heavenly Father
not a hair can fall from my head;
indeed, all things must work together
for my salvation.
Therefore, by his Holy Spirit
he also assures me
of eternal life
and makes me heartily willing and ready
from now on to live for him.
(from the Heidelberg Catechism)
 The hymn is called Ubi caritas; the first line is, “Where charity and love are, God is there.”
 This is from a homily of St. Charbel found in Love is a Radiant Light, compiled by Hanna Skandar.