Selma’s love ‘never faileth’

Published 8:40pm Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Every year the Times-Journal releases a publication that features the great assets of our city. This weekend, after an exciting staff scavenger hunt, we unveiled this year’s theme for our annual Horizons edition, which is ‘What’s Right Here.’

This magazine’s theme focuses on a topic I love to discuss — what great things already exist in Selma, and what we are most proud of. I couldn’t help but think of a verse I have been reflecting on and how it relates to Selma. My Sunday school teacher taught me that when you are needing to self-evaluate, read 1 Corinthians 13. This is the passage where the Bible defines love. Anytime the passage says “love,” replace that word with a name. So it would read, “Ashley is patient, Ashley is kind, Ashley is not self-seeking, etc.” Then ask yourself if those statements are true. Am I patient? Am I self-seeking? At the end of this exercise I always find I fall short in many categories.

Then I thought about this in terms of Selma and plugged our city’s name into those definitions of love. “Selma is patient, Selma is kind, Selma does not envy, Selma does not boast, and is not proud…” Sure, we may fall short in these categories, but after covering events and interviewing so many Selmians, I know Selma strives to be this complete definition of love. My favorite part about Selma, however, is how our city plugs into the definition of love in verse seven of this passage.

“Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” (NLT)

I can think of an example of how Selma fits into these definitions of what love is from the places I have been and the stories of love and hope I have seen here.

Selma never gives up: Our fight to keep industry alive here is amazing. City officials like Mayor George Evans and Dallas County officials like Wayne Vardaman work diligently everyday to keep this dream of growth alive. From new beautification efforts, to recruiting new industry in town, every resident plays a role.

Selma never loses faith: The churches in this town pray diligently for revival daily. Church and spiritual leaders from all walks of life, though they may differ, yearn for the same outcome. Our city of faith, from its small-whitewashed chapels to its glorious spires, is one that worships and never loses faith. Not a candidate I spoke to after the election failed to mention how the Lord played a role in their candidacy (winning and losing.)

Selma always hopes: If you could have seen the faces of the family members of missing Adline George, they are a testament to this. Their hope to find their mother is never ceasing.

Selma always endures: Selma has faced every kind of hardship, but most importantly Selma has overcome. Selma overcame the poverty and tough times of the reconstruction era following the Civil War. Selma also endured through racism and turmoil and came out on the other side of the bridge smiling.

No matter where we go next, we know we will move forward as a united and loving city.

  • johngrayson

    Great piece. It’s good to read something positive about Selma. Let’s keep speaking it over our city. Selma is a great place with great people.

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