And the Greatest is Love…

18 Mar

I haven’t been able to blog lately because the words just haven’t been there. My thoughts are across the country with family in Sacramento, and I’m having trouble stringing together meaningful words. It’s an unusual situation for me, considering words usually spring from my heart and my funny bone at the slightest poke.

Yet, as I wait for news, five powerful words circle my heart. They have become the only words that matter to me lately, and as I ponder them I realize they represent the only concepts that have mattered to millions of people throughout the generations.

The first two words are “friends and family.” When life is stripped to the bare minimum, friends and family are still there. When we’re no longer concerned about finances, housekeeping, physical fitness, status, retirement, or earthly belongings, we look at those around us and realize friends and family are all that matter.

The next three are also grouped together, and not just in an Alan Jackson song. They are “faith, hope, and love.” I’ve wondered through the years how anyone can claim that, of the three, love is greatest, but I think it’s sinking in this week.

Faith is an essential element. We all put our faith in something, whether in God’s mercy and providence or in our own ability to keep our lives on track. The strength of our faith builds or erodes as we receive evidence of its trustworthiness.

Hope sustains us. It is a desire we harbor deep inside that our faith is well placed. For those who have put their faith in God, hope keeps us from despair in troubled times and makes it possible for us to experience what the Bible refers to as “a peace that passes all understanding.”

But love, well now, that’s a grand concept, is it not? Love can be given, received, taught, revealed, demonstrated, and treasured. Love can heal, comfort, encourage, inspire, and even save someone’s life. Love is the answer. Love makes the world go around. Love is alive. In fact, I can go on listing music titles for pages and never hit them all.

Yet, none of that tells me why love is the greatest of the three, so here’s my best shot at it:



One day, you see, although they will endure until the end of time, one day there will no longer be a need for faith or hope. Only love. Regardless of what you believe or hope is keeping this world on its axis, there can only be one truth. I place all my faith in God’s promise that the truth is He is Love.

God is love, and God is eternal, so love is eternal.

Willa, your family loves you, and that’s a truth for all eternity.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” — 1 Corinthians 13:13

14 Responses to “And the Greatest is Love…”

  1. Kathleen Grunden March 18, 2015 at 10:03 am #

    Thank you . . . and beautiful–both the picture (Jerry’s mom?) and the words.

    • pjoy93 March 18, 2015 at 10:17 am #

      Yes, that’s her. I love this picture. 🙂

  2. Carey Roberts March 18, 2015 at 11:34 am #

    So well said. Meaningful. Words to live by.

  3. Allyn Bamberger March 18, 2015 at 12:43 pm #

    Wonderful, Rose! What a beautiful picture of your mother-in-law.

  4. Margaret March 18, 2015 at 1:28 pm #

    Very nice Rose. Thank You.

  5. Liz March 18, 2015 at 1:32 pm #

    Family & Love-not two words, just one.

  6. D. Wallace Peach March 18, 2015 at 4:20 pm #

    Beautiful sentiment and truth about what matters. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Heidi March 18, 2015 at 5:01 pm #

    So well written. Thank you for sharing!!! Stopping to pray now.

  8. Phanalphie March 18, 2015 at 6:16 pm #

    So beautifully said. Thank you for sharing.

  9. Michele Lach Halbeisen March 19, 2015 at 10:00 am #

    How true this all is!

  10. Loretta April 22, 2015 at 1:10 pm #

    Your way with words is a truly wonderful talent. The light of God shines through you! This picture of my sister is beautiful. Thank you for sharring your talents.

    • pjoy93 April 22, 2015 at 1:59 pm #

      Thank you so much, Loretta.

  11. Doug March 18, 2016 at 10:57 pm #

    I can’t really put into words what I want to say, just know that I appreciate your wonderful words. I miss her more than I thought I would, but I think of her everyday. I know with all my heart she resides in the kingdom of our Heavenly Father and that I will see her again. Thanks Rose. We love you. Please give my big brother a hug from me and tell him I miss him.


  1. State of the Portrait Writer Report | The Portrait Writer - December 31, 2015

    […] brought sadness and a greater appreciation for love and family, when Willa, the Fitzsimmons’ matriarch, left us for a far better place. Although her four children are still […]

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