My wife is an excellent cook. When she gets close to the end of one of her culinary masterpieces she will ask me to come for a taste. I of course readily comply. She will then look at me and often say: “something’s missing”. It may need more salt or a certain spice or even a little more time for the ingredients to blend. The missing ingredient makes the dish complete.
Relationships can resemble a meal that turns out being a tasteless disaster. Our marriages, our families, our government, our neighbors are all relationships that we must get right. However many times there is something missing. The absence of this missing ingredient generates conflict, anger, bitterness, distance, standoffs and a whole host of relationship breakers. What is this missing ingredient? It is love. Paul tells us in 1 Cor. 13:4-8: “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails…” The kind of love that is described here is selfless and seeks the greatest good of someone else. Think of how wonderful our marriages would be if we constantly added love to the recipe. Think of how happy our families would be if love was the overriding rule. Just imagine how much could be accomplished even in government if both sides would put into practice the love spoken about in scripture.
I realize it seems impossible for our sinful natures to love someone else selflessly. I agree. This kind of love can only come supernaturally. The Bible tells us that believers are given that capacity to love through the power of the Holy Spirit (Rom. 5:5). We all can become master chefs in creating relationships that are delicious. All we need to do is add the missing ingredient of love.
Pastor Stultz has been writing this weekly devotional for many years. In 2009, he published a compilation of devotionals in book form, also called Moments of Meditation