I have not seen the 2020 movie, “Call of the Wild,” yet a quote from it kept speaking to me. While reading about the latest film based on the classic story by Jack London, I learned that Perrault, a mailman, says, “You see, Buck, we don’t carry mail. We carry lives. We carry hope. We carry love.”
I pondered the mailman’s comments and realized that this character said he did the very thing that Christian believers should do. I believe we should carry hope and love everywhere we go. They should be such deep-rooted parts of our being that we cannot go anywhere without those two elements being seen and felt by others. Everywhere around us are people who need hope and love, so we need to share.
There are many song lyrics by talented Oscar Hammerstein II that I like very much. One of my all-time favorite movies is the 1959 award-winning musical, “The Sound of Music,” so I remember Rodgers’ and Hammerstein’s song, “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.” The introduction for the reprise was not used in the film but is in theater versions. I like what those lyrics say about love:
“A bell is no bell till you ring it,
A song is no song till you sing it,
And love in your heart wasn’t put there to stay —
Love isn’t love till you give it away.” (Hammerstein)
Perhaps love that remains in a heart and never given away is not real love. Maybe love that is real has to be shared. I think Mr. Hammerstein understood love the way it ought to be.
Don Roth and Timmy Tappan, two songwriters, were inspired by and borrowed from Hammerstein’s lyrics when they wrote “Love Isn’t Love (‘Til You Give It Away)”, a song recorded by Reba McEntire:
“A smile’s not a smile until it wrinkles your face.
A bell’s not a bell without ringing.
A home’s not a home when there’s nobody there.
A song’s not a song without singing.
Love isn’t love till you give it away.
Love isn’t love till it’s free.
The love in your heart wasn’t put there to stay.
Oh, love isn’t love till you give it away.”
(Roth and Tappan)
I have said that I have enough hope to share, and I try to do that via this blog. When I write about hope, am I sharing love as well? Love is said to multiply or increase when it is given away. Does it decrease when not shared? It seems selfish to try to keep love to oneself, and real love is not selfish.
It is generally understood that we cannot give that which we do not have. Who is the Source of love and hope? Where are they found? How are they accessed? Good questions! I know Who has answers.
According to the Book with answers to Life’s questions, the Christian’s Bible, God is Love. He wants to share His love that is found in Jesus Christ. To experience His love and hope (and forgiveness, peace, joy, and every good gift), one has only to accept Him as Savior and Lord. This is how one can have enough hope and love to share. Knowing Him, following Him, and trusting Him cause our faith, hope, and love to increase. The more we share, the more we will have.
If we know Jesus, then we carry love, and we carry hope — just as Perrault wisely equated with carrying mail. May we be intentional to not only carry but leave hope and love everywhere we go. When the world looks at us, may they see hope and love. May they see Jesus. They will if we carry His light to the world that seems to be growing darker.
“Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)
“But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13)
“But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness but according to His mercy by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, Whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” (Titus 3:4-7)
“Beloved, let us love one another for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this, love is perfected with us so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him that the one who loves God should love his brother also.” (1 John 4:7-21)