"When I was a child, I spake as a child." When I was younger these words were always used by and against me as an insult. However, when Paul wrote to the Corinthians, he wrote these words out of love. He was trying to show the Corinthians a more excellent way.
In chapter 12 of 1 Corinthians, Paul is talking about spiritual gifts. He tells the Corinthians to use their gifts in unity, for the glory of God. But after all this talk about spiritual gifts, he comments, "and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way. "
The next chapter (chapter 13) is all about the qualities of love. Paul lists all manner of great works. He says that if he did all these great things, and did not have love, he would be nothing. He then says compares desiring gifts and great works as the way of a child. He contrasts works alone, with exhibiting Christ’s love like a mature person would. He says that showing love is far better than just doing good things. In fact, he says without love, everything a person does is worthless.
So in light of this passage, are you acting like a spiritual child? Are you seeking after the great works of God and working hard to do good things, but not allowing God’s power to transform you? If you are, your works are in vain.
I would like to challenge you, ask God to transform you so you reflect the qualities of His love. Doing great things for God is not enough, our character must reflect His. As God’s personality permeates our being, we will naturally do great things for Him and use the gifts He has given us for His glory.
Are you living the more excellent way?
"And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." – 1 Corinthians 13:13