My wife found this letter in some old boxes. It was written in 1997.
Love is a rose whose fragrance overshadows its thorns. It is a seed which sown lies hidden, patiently awaiting the flower if its beloved. Love is the tear in Compassion’s eye, the smile on Mercy’s lips, and the warmth of Understanding’s embrace. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. Never.
My heart’s desire is for our Father’s love to be perfected in me. I want to be clothed with compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness and patience. I want these virtues to emanate from me as God sheds His love abroad in my heart. If I never see another miracle, at least let me love my wife as though she were my own body; let me love my neighbor as though I were loving myself; let me love my brothers and sisters and all my enemies as I have been loved, — kindly, patiently, unselfishly, and unconditionally.
I believe that as we walk in love and work from love we are planting seeds that might one day grow to become sturdy oaks. I believe we are pervading the earth with the fragrant aroma of the Spirit of Jesus. (The Holy Spirit tells me now the creation appreciates the children of God.) I believe love is of God and we are of God if we love one another as He has love us. And God loved us not in word, but in deed, by sending His only begotten Son to redeem us and reconcile us to Himself, that He might bestow upon us His exceeding great and precious promises. I long for His love to be perfected in me!
Our works of love, whether they be toward our spouse, our neighbor, or our enemy are never in vain. They speak volumes throughout eternity even as I write. Our God is not confined by time. At this very moment He exists before time, He exists today, and He exits forever. Since love of Him, the works we do in love ring through the ages.
The spirit of love is the Spirit of the Lamb, giving oneself for the sake of others. May we live, breathe, and walk in the Spirit of the Lamb. May we take his yoke upon us and learn of Him. May we assimilate His ways in all our dealings with our spouses, our neighbors, our brothers and sisters, and even our enemies. May we always be true children of God.
Dear friends, faith moves mountains — love moves men; may we be fishers of men. Let us pervade the earth with the fragrant aroma of the Spirit of Jesus, loving one another from the heart, in deed and in truth. May the world come to know we are true disciples of the Son of God.
Rev. Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant