Love Is Patient | Love Defined

Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Boone+Owl 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Love is patient. That is often times a lot easier said than done. Sometimes, it's not so easy to be patient or selflessly love others. I've mentioned before that my sister and her two little munchkins are staying with us. Having them here is sweet. Being able to build into those little girls lives is a blessing. It's also trying at times. Relationships of any kind are, from time to time. None of us are immune to stress, hurt feelings, or simply being worn out. In those moments it can be hard to love as we should.

I think most have heard 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a quoted. It's a common passage, and one that we can take a lot from. I sat down the other day to study this passage as a reminder of biblical love. I'll be honest, I was having one of those impatient days where my interaction with those I love was less than loving. I needed a reminder of how to love them selflessly, I needed a reminder of what real love looks like.  In these verses of 1 Corinthians chapter 13, love is defined. The fulness of love is described so simply. Positively, love is patient with people and gracious to them with generosity. Love never envies, or brags, or is arrogant, since that is the opposite of selfless service to others. Love is never rude or overbearing, it never wants its own way, it is not irritated or angered in personal offense, and finds no pleasure in someone else's sin, even the sin of an enemy. Love is devoted to truth in everything. With regard to "all things" within God's righteous and gracious will, love protects, believes, hopes, and endures what others reject.

I know, you're probably sitting there scratching your head thinking "it's impossible to love someone like that all the time, or sometimes, even at all.." Believe me, I know. That is the beauty of the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives when we come to saving faith in Jesus Christ. The work of the Holy Spirit in our lives makes it possible for us to love this selflessly, even when it's hard and people are unloveable. We all struggle and have bad days, we all falter. That is a given. We're not talking about perfection here. But love is a divine quality, and as we strive to live out our faith and grow closer to Christ, it becomes easier to display true love, a love that lasts and has permanence as a divine quality, a love that outlasts all failures. "Love never fails.."

So, I encourage you, if you're struggling to be patient, or you feel wronged, or you're struggling to love someone unloveable, ponder these verses and ask the Lord to help you love selflessly, ask Him for patience, to work through your hurt, whatever it may be. When we give our struggles to God, no matter what they are, He hears, and He will meet you in your struggle. You just might find yourself loving more truly and more wholly than you were before! And with a love like that, you often will find a sweet peacefulness, even on those hard days.

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