While sitting in a hospital waiting room I watched an elderly couple come in for an appointment. He was in a wheel chair and was looking very frail. When a nurse came and wheeled him down a long corridor and he was out of sight, his wife broke down in tears. Almost instantly the lady sitting beside me hurried to her side and softly spoke to her asking if she could pray with her. After the prayer, while they were holding hands, the lady revealed that she and her husband had been married for over 65 years. Then she looked at the lady who prayed with her and asked, “Are you a Catholic? I am.” The prayer lady put her arm around the elderly lady and said, “No. But that really doesn’t matter right now. We both love Jesus.”
Paul wrote, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” I don’t think Paul would mind if I paraphrased his masterpiece and say, “And now these three exist: doctrine, church membership and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
Truly living life to its fullest is understanding the necessities of priorities. Doctrine can be important. Church affiliation might be important. But love puts them in the shade because love shines. Love brightens life. Love tears away our manmade barriers. The moments we love are the moments the light of heaven surrounds us with real truth.
I found myself wishing I was the one who had taken the initiative to reach out to the old lady. I wasn’t. But thank God there was someone in the room who did. We must never be too shy to love.