Who has written one of the finest love poems ever written: 1 Corinthians 13.
A love poem about love. A love poem to Jesus. A love poem to God. To Love Himself.
Please permit me to repeat it here. There is such loveliness in this that I sometimes feel something in my throat and in my eyes. An aching in my being. As I read it. As I allow it to penetrate down into me. And then a growing feeling that I must explode. Must become a being no longer held separate from God. But must atomize. Must disintegrate into the very being of God. That this is what I really want. What my destiny truly is.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames but have not love, I gain nothing.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, 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.
“Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
And I say that what I want is to disintegrate into the being of God because. Because this is what it feels like. Partly. To be in love with God. When one looks into the eyes of God, one finds great gentleness and great power and great righteousness and great beauty and great forgiveness and great love. Remarkable, improbable, ridiculous, felicitous, and infinite love. Patient and steadfast and unalloyed and fortunate love.
This sense that one must fly apart and into the very being of God is what it feels like to recognize in God a love that is unconditional and that refuses moderation. That is undignified and immodest. That is obvious and intimate and shameless. That is complete and that will not change.
One feels that one cannot remain who one is and be loved in this way. One must. Oh. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the show Star Trek or any of the movies. But what they have in there is a gizmo that atomizes you. And that. Oh, I don’t know. Turns you into bits of light or something. And then transports you to someplace else.
Well, that’s what I’m talking about. Disintegrating in the machine of God’s being. Becoming something that is no longer me, exactly, but is still me in a sense. In a radically modified sense. Because if and when I get reassembled, I’ve got to believe I’ll be someone who only remotely resembles the person I am now. Or perhaps this is just a hope. Or maybe it’s both logic and hope.
And so this feels like something I must do. Not something I’d like to do. Or something it would be nice to do or instructive to do or entertaining to do. There is some instinct or drive or. As I say. Some feeling of destiny implied here. Some motive implied here. Something that seeks a certain sort of fulfillment. Something built in from the beginning.
Creative annihilation, maybe. Love transformation. Ridding oneself of one’s insufficiency. Leaving that behind.