love = wisdom

Written:

2/11/09

Published:

2/14/09

Bibliography:

Philippians 1:9

 

“And this is my prayer, that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight…”

I am stirred by the thought that it is at least partly through having love in increasing measure that we begin to see clearly into a matter.

The word ‘insight’ here is translated from the Greek word aesthesis, and in this context means “having the capacity to perceive clearly and hence to understand the real nature of something”. The word ‘love’ in the original Greek is agape, and means “having love for someone or something based on sincere appreciation or high regard.”

What Paul says here is a deep truth that has potentially profound implications for how one views the path to wisdom and discernment.

I try to imagine one of my university professors pausing in the midst of a lecture on how to solve third order differential equations and saying, ‘now, you know the best way to get the root of this equation is to focus yourself on selfless love for others’, and I smile.

Certainly it is true in my own life that I begin to view life situations and people differently when I am not overly task-focussed or self-focussed—when I am filled with a love for them, everything changes. Including, perhaps most importantly, my perspective.

It is not until now that I have considered that seeing them ‘differently’ (when I am filled with love vs. what’s next on my Outlook calendar) may actually be seeing them more clearly or completely.

If I can only begin to see into the true nature of a matter, or a person’s need when I am operating from a paradigm of agape love, the critical question to begin actualizing this truth is what can I do to cultivate this love for others, as a complementary action to God’s working in me?

Author: steeres

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