I Peter 1:22 love one another as if your lives depended on it. (Eugene Peterson, The Message translation)
I think this sentence, and in this translation, is becoming my new favorite Bible quote. That’s because it so clearly gets to what I think is the core and center of our Christian faith. We are here, our purpose in life is, to love one another. We are not given life to make money; we make money to have more resources to love one another. We are not powerful that we might be important; we are here to use what power we have to help the powerless – because we love one another.
This was brought home to me this morning in an odd way. I began the morning by watching the worship service from Dornoch Cathedral in Dornoch, Scotland. The pastor, the Rt. Rev. Susan Brown, of the Church of Scotland, was talking about the centrality of love, even in the midst of pandemic. And then the vagaries of web browsing brought me to the funeral eulogy Andrew Cuomo offered for his father, NY Governor Mario Cuomo. Not one to mince words, Andrew Cuomo made it clear that every single thing his father did, he did because he believed that the central tenet of the Christian faith was that we must love one another. And then I took part in the Livestreaming of Old South Church in Boston’s Sunday service and got yet another serving of love.
It struck me so powerfully – sandwiched between two good sermons was this powerful testimony by a lay person that the lives of the people of New York State had been changed, bettered by a man who profoundly believed that it is our job to love one another. It’s not just a pastor’s platitude. This was a report from the trenches by someone who knows what he’s talking about. Love makes a difference. Love saves lives. Love makes life worth living.
Easter blessings, Pastor Virginia