Once upon a time there was a leader. She led for a long time and knew a few things, or so she thought. Others looked to her for guidance and some even called her their mentor. She was respected; well thought of, and, as she looked towards the few years left before retirement, she turned her thoughts towards the legacy she wanted to leave.
She loved to write and thought that she would surely have enough material for a book on leadership to leave for those who would follow.
One day she woke up to find that she had been in a sort of dream and nothing was as she thought it was. She discovered that she had made many mistakes and had a great deal yet to learn.
"A book on leadership?" she thought, aghast, "What arrogance to think that I had anything to say!"
Instead, she saw clearly, that everything she thought she knew was elementary. She had important things to learn about what it means to be a leader.
Instead of basking in years of rosy reflection and words of wisdom, she wanted to leave behind a different kind of legacy; one borne of example lived out; an example that has at its root, a love that loves others more than self. And she was grateful for years left to do better
1 If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate. 2If I speak God's Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing. 3-7If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love.
Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn't want what it doesn't have.
Love doesn't strut,
Doesn't have a swelled head,
Doesn't force itself on others,
Isn't always "me first,"
Doesn't fly off the handle,
Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn't revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
8-10Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.
11When I was an infant at my mother's breast, I gurgled and cooed like any infant. When I grew up, I left those infant ways for good.
12We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!
13But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love. (1 Corinthians 13, The Message)