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If I do not have love…

by Bettina Van Vaerenbergh

If I can speak every language
Of angels, and of men;
But I do not have love -
What am I profited then?

I'm only a resounding gong,
A clanging cymbal merely;
If I do not love -
In deed, and sincerely.

If I possess great knowledge
And the gift of prophecy,
If my faith moves mountains,
And I can fathom every mystery;

If I am wise, like Solomon,
What good will it bring?
If I do not have love -
Then, in reality, I am nothing.

If I give all of my possessions
To the needy, and the poor;
But I do not have love -
I'm nothing better than before.

Though prophecies will cease,
And knowledge pass away;
Love never ever fails -
It is the more excellent way!

Love is patient, love is kind,
It is not proud, it does not envy;
Love forgives and forgets;
It does not easily get angry.

Love is not self-seeking;
It is not rude, it never sneers.
Love always protects others;
Always trusts and perseveres.

Love does not dishonor others;
In evil it takes no delight.
Love rejoices with the truth, love
Hopes for what is good, and right.

Faith, hope, and love, brethren;
Now these three remain…
Of these, love is the greatest;
Love cannot die, cannot be slain.

Beloved, let us put behind us
All of our childish ways;
From now on, let us live to love -
Until we see God, face to face.

For now we see dimly, in a mirror,
And we can only know in part.
On that day, we will know fully;
Just as God fully knows our heart.

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