This I Believe

Hannah - Bellevue, Washington
Entered on November 1, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: love


What do I believe in? I’ve never had to really answer that question so specifically and so in depth before. What do I believe? There are so many things I believe, it’s hard to name them all. After thinking for many days, all I can come up with is this: love. As sappy as is it sounds, this is what I believe.

I didn’t always know what love was, I mean I knew that my family and friends loved me, but what was love anyway, and why did it matter? I couldn’t put my finger on it. I just couldn’t find the answer to my small, simple question. What was love?

One night, about a year ago, I did what I call, “soul searching.” I was lying awake at night asking those questions everyone asks. What am I here for? What am I supposed to do? What do I have to offer? What are my talents, my joys, or my passions? Who exactly am I? I didn’t know, and I was ashamed and frustrated. I picked up my Bible, something I hadn’t done in a while, and started looking. I tore through pages searching for something that made sense, something that applied to my life, something with guidance. I turned the thin pages over and over until they blurred with my tears. But then I stopped at I Corinthians 13:2-3. I read the lines slowly, and they made perfect sense. “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 give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.”

Wow. I was stunned speechless, and today I still am. From that point on, every time I thought if that verse, I realized it doesn’t matter who I am. It doesn’t matter if I’m cool, if I’m rich or poor. It doesn’t matter what grades I get, or whether I know what my future is or what I’ve done. If you don’t have love, it doesn’t matter. But still, what is love? Love “always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” There was my answer, laid out in front of me. It was just waiting to be read.

So far, that night has been a turning point in my life. My confidence grew because I had answers and I was, for the first time in a long time, happy. I was changed, transformed. It had seemed like I’d stepped out of the confines of my room into the glorious light of the sun. I have to admit I’m not always filled with the joys of love. It’s hard to maintain that kind of attitude; I don’t know why. No one’s perfect, right? Even if I mess up I still try to love each day. This I believe.