In 1st Corinthians 13:1-7, the Apostle Paul spoke about love: 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.

It is interesting to note that there is one thing powering all the Gifts of God. It’s love. Yes, it takes faith too. Without faith it is impossible to please God. But Paul said faith without love is worthless. We can get out of balance with faith if we’re not careful.

The Lord started talking to me about this the day we left for Alabama, and it has remained fresh on my mind each day till now. Why did we go to Alabama? A dear man there needs a touch from God to get well. My heart is moved with compassion for him. Yes, I have faith to believe for his healing, but this goes beyond faith. It goes beyond knowing the promises of God. It goes into the realm of truly loving someone, like the way God loves us and gave His only begotten Son for us.
Sometimes we are moved to pray for someone, and that’s fine. But sometimes it goes beyond praying, and your heart is just filled with compassion like Jesus had for the sick, and you know you just have to go to them. Jesus did that sometimes. He wasn’t too busy to personally take the love of God where it was needed. “Special Delivery”, if you will. Like the time the Centurion sought Jesus for the healing of his dear servant at home. Jesus said I will come and heal him. The Centurion told him Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under my roof, but send the word only and my servant will be healed. So Jesus said the word and it was done. But He was willing to go to him.
 And another time, Jairus, a ruler of the Synagogue asked Jesus to come and heal his daughter who was at home dying. And Jesus went to her and actually raised her from the dead. Jesus raised a widow’s son from the funeral bier. Imagine the joy of that widow woman receiving her son back alive! People cried out to Him, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me! That pushed His HOT button every time. Jesus had this thing about Him that He just had to end people’s suffering. That’s compassion. He had every gift of God imaginable at work, but what REALLY moved Him was love. That’s what needs to be moving US!
You know, Jesus could have said, I’ll send one of my disciples. He could have said, I’m too busy right now. He could have made an excuse like many of us do when we’re asked to pray. But not our Lord Jesus. He was MOVED WITH COMPASSION. Oh, my. How we need to be moved with compassion today!
One day shortly after I was saved in 1993, while reading in Luke 1 about God’s plan to give us a Savior, verse 37 seemed to jump off the page at me, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” The Lord said “Read it again, Jerry.” So I did. He said, “Read it again.” This happened several times, until I said, Lord, I’ve read it so many times now I have it memorized….For with God nothing shall be impossible…..see?  He said, “You still don’t see it. For Me to see my precious children suffering from sin and sickness and the curse, and do NOTHING, THAT is impossible with Me. I am moved with compassion to DO something. I HAD to make a way to redeem you all. So you see, the only thing impossible for Me is to look the other way at suffering and do nothing.” Wow. Now I know what love means.
That one statement from the Lord alone shaped my ministry. It changed me. Here, all this time before I was saved, I had been told of a tough-judge God who demanded payment in hell for sin. I’d heard all the hellfire and brimstone sermons and frankly, I was terrified of meeting God. But when God healed and saved the chief among sinners, namely ME, I knew I had severely misidentified God.
Here I thought He couldn’t wait to send me to hell, and instead He actually loved me and made a way for me NOT to go to hell. I couldn’t comprehend that kind of love. I read where I was to love God with all my heart, soul, mind and strength, and my neighbor as myself. Why, I didn’t even love myself, let alone anyone else. I was a mess with a capital “M”. So how could I love my neighbor? The Lord told me “You can’t with YOUR love, so I’ll give you MINE.” He filled ME with compassion. Imagine that! And from where I came from, that’s a major change, believe me. I used to be so selfish I just didn’t care if someone was sick and suffering. I figured, hey, life’s tough. I have my problems and you have yours. Deal with it!
 But all that changed when I was dying in 1993 from melanomas and liver cancer. Never in my life had I ever been in such pain and suffering. After going through that, now MY heart is moved with compassion. How ironic that God would use my own suffering to give me a heart to pray for others. That’s why I drive thousands of miles a year to pray for the sick, and stay up all hours of the night praying for people on the internet. Not blowing my horn. Far from it. I’m telling you, GOD CAN CHANGE YOUR HEART if you’ll let Him. He changed mine.
Paul really hit the nail on the head when he said it all works by love. Paul’s intense love for Jesus and what Jesus did for us, enabled and indeed motivated him to endure beatings, prison, deprivation, discomfort, and sometimes poverty, just to tell people about Jesus. His life was moved with compassion, just like his Savior. He wrote much of the New Testament from prison, not for his benefit, but for OURS. I can’t see that he did any of his ministry for his own benefit.
Heaven forbid WE should ever be uncomfortable or deprived or have to suffer for the name of Jesus. All too often we are only concerned with our own little world, our own salvation, healing, deliverance, and prosperity and then we wonder why sometimes our faith doesn’t work? Could it be we have omitted the weightier matter of love? We know all the right scriptures, think we have enough faith to move the mountain. We can make our case with God just like a high-powered lawyer. Got all our “Thee’s and Thou’s in the right place, talk to God in “King James” like a pro, and have the devil under our feet. Whew! Boy, LOOK OUT DEVIL, we have AUTHORITY!! But somehow it just isn’t getting results????
Next time you’re praying for something or someone, ask yourself; Am I praying because of love? Will God be glorified by this? Will God’s love be made clearer to someone by my action or prayer?
Remember, it all works by love!
PRAYER: Father God in heaven, Hallowed and Holy is Your name. Lord, look upon my heart, if I am lacking in love, have mercy upon me and put YOUR love inside me. Help me to become an instrument of Your peace. Put a heart of compassion in me that I may bring glory to You, I ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.