Last night I had a rather odd dream. I only remember a small portion of it, and I only remembered that part after something jogged my memory this morning. In the dream someone I did not recognize said to me, “You are useless.”
In the dream I was of course shocked that someone would say this to me. I was taken aback for a moment and then I thought of what I spend most days a week doing. I spend most days encouraging, comforting, praying and helping people with critical medical conditions, people with terminal diseases. I responded to the person in my dream, “I am not useless to the people I help every day.”
I had completely forgotten the dream when I awoke this morning. I went into the spare bedroom to spend some time in prayer and to read my Bible. I felt drawn to read First Corinthians chapter thirteen.
IF I [can] speak in the tongues of men and [even] of angels, but have not love (that reasoning, intentional, spiritual devotion such as is inspired by God’s love for and in us), I am only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess all knowledge, and if I have [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God’s love in me), I am nothing (a useless nobody). Even if I dole out all that I have [to the poor in providing] food, and if I surrender my body to be burned or in order that I may glory, but have not love (God’s love in me), I gain nothing. (1 Corinthians 13:1-3, Amplified)
As I read this passage, I suddenly remembered my dream when I read the part that said without God’s love I am a useless nobody. Thank God I am not without His love. I am not useful because of what I do. You are not useful because of what you do. We can speak in tongues. We can have prophetic powers. We can have faith that moves mountains. We can give to the poor. We can sacrifice our own selves. But without love we would still be useless.
Why do we do what we do? Why do I do what I do? I invite the Holy Spirit to show me when I may have a motive other than love in anything that I do. I am useful to God. I am useful to this world. I am useful to my family when I am moved and motivated by nothing but His love in me.
Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Psalm 139:23-24, Amplified)
Father, search me and teach me to love. In Jesus’ Name, amen.