Paul gives us one of the simplest and yet most profound definitions of love in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8: ‘Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.’ In Jesus, we see all these characteristics of love perfectly embodied. He loved people deeply, forgave their mistakes and betrayals and gave them the hope of new life with Him. Even to the thief on the cross He offered forgiveness and the promise of eternal paradise.

Paul reminds us that without love we are nothing, no matter how great our achievements, generosity or sacrifice. (1 Cor 13:1-3) May God’s love be ‘shed abroad’ in our hearts, so that we may love others with that same love. (Rom 5:5)