What is better? Love or Power? Feels like a trick question, right?
Cos obviously i will be looking for Love… or will i?
My friend Rene shared a quote on Sunday from Martin Luther King Jnr which i don’t remember hearing before but which caught my attention:
“Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anaemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.”
There is a lot to think about there, but i really like the punchline:
Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice.
Love at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.
Another Both/And instead of the typical Either/Or… i’m beginning to suspect that Both/And might need to be the rule with Either/Or as the exception.
It’s interesting to note that Paul wrote something similar in the Bible actually in his letter to Timothy:
‘For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.’
Throw self-discipline into the mix and it probably helps you to keep a healthy balance between power and love.
What is lacking? Power or Love?
Many of the problems in South Africa stem from a lack of love. Or love-related themes such as compassion or empathy or mercy.
But many of the problems in South Africa also stem from a lack of power. Or power-related themes such as access or opportunity or agency.
So i guess at the end of the day, these two questions come to mind:
#1 How can i use my power to make a difference in my community and country?
#2 How will my love move me to get involved and make a difference in the lives of those around me, especially those who perhaps don’t have the means or the power to do it for themselves?