A Picture of Love
"Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance." - (1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NLT)
Thoughts for Today
What does love look like? First Corinthians 13 gives us a beautiful picture of godly love.
"Love is patient and kind."
Hmmm. Does that describe me? Am I ever impatient with my spouse or my kids? With that cashier who is ever so slow? With the server who brings the wrong meal?
And kindness. How about when I'm stressed after a long day and things just aren't going my way? Who do I take that out on? How many times have I caused pain by speaking a sharp word?
"Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude."
Ouch. I've been known to show jealousy. And sometimes I just have to be sure someone knows what I've accomplished. And then there are the occasions I've patted myself on the back, forgetting that the accomplishment came only by God's grace.
"It does not demand its own way."
This is really getting personal. What's wrong with demanding my own way when I am so sure it's the right way? But I guess that's not showing love. They think their way is right too. I guess I should listen to what they are saying.
"It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged."
Oops. There I am again. I really need to learn to forgive and put the past in the past.
"It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out."
I need to work more on wanting truth and justice in every situation, even when the outcome is not what I think I want.
"Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance."
I know if I have God's love in me, I won't give up no matter what the circumstances.
Consider this …
Today's scripture describes godly love. Will we always live that way? Probably not. But that should be our goal. And we need to remember that we can't demonstrate godly love on our own. We need God's help. We need God's love living in us.
Are you struggling in any of these areas? Turn to him. With him, all things are possible.
Father, thank you for loving me this way. I really want to love you and others with this kind of love but fail so often. Help me to learn. Help me to remember to lean on you and not try to do it on my own. In Jesus' name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …
Authentic Living in an Artificial World by Dr. Mike Chapman. This 45-minute group study gives understanding about what it means to be real. The facilitator's guide includes reproducible group member study sheets and an audio CD designed to help facilitators prepare for each session. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a study for individuals or couples.
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