Posted by: jaimemwsanders | March 28, 2020

The greatest of these is love

“If you have had enough of coronavirus news for the moment, here is a picture of a very fluffy cat showing you his belly.” That was my Facebook post that got the most “likes” and “loves” of any in the past two weeks. Far more than any of the theological reflections.

Maybe we are looking for meaning in this time of pandemic. But, if so, it is because we are looking for love. The search for God in hardship, the quest for meaning, what theologians call theodicy, is at its root a search for love. “If God loves us, why do bad things happen?” The playwright Archibald MacLeish expressed the conundrum as, “If God is God, God is not good; If God is good, God is not God.” (J.B., 1958, quoted from memory) From this dilemma comes classical doctrines of original sin and many bad modern sermons.

But, when people are hurting, is it understanding that they are truly searching for? Or is it simply love? Some comfort? A friendly and soft fellow creature asking us for attention. The song of a bird outside the window. A warm loaf of bread. For

malt does more than Milton can To justify God’s ways to man.

from A Shropshire Lad by A.E. Housman

At this time of grief and fear, the Daily Lectionary of the Episcopal Church gave us today 1 Corinthians 13.

If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

1 Corinthians 13:1

Let us look for and accept love where we find it. Even in a fluffy cat showing us his belly.

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