After a bit of inspiration from Beejai at The River Walk, I would like to start a short series on the qualities of love. I know the verses, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, may be redundant to some, especially if you have grown up in the church or been to many weddings in your lifetime. However, instead of repeating this scripture and tell you to follow it, I want to dig deeper and apply each part of it to our lives.
I remember from about the age of 14, using this verse to keep myself in check. I used to look at the verse, and, realizing that, when we give our lives over to God, we should be changing to become more and more like Christ; and Christ is love; and “34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13 NKJV); I would evaluate whether I was living a life of love or not. I would do this fairly often.
So what I would like to do is break down the verse, and evaluate each part like I used to once upon a time.
“4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NKJV)
In our relationships, both romantic and other, patience (or longsuffering) allows us to deal with issues without making the people an issue. To look at your partner, friend, family member, and know that they are not the problem, and to address the problem itself can be difficult at times, especially when situations are difficult, but it is oh so important!
Imagine what would happen during the stressful times if, rather than support our loved ones, we had no patience for them? Do you think this would help them at all? If we turn it around, would it help us? If we have no patience for others, what will soon happen? We will be wearing on their patience and their nerves with our lack of patience. Not only is that making life harder for them, it is pushing them closer and closer to probably making your life harder as well. Wisdom and love both dictate that we should act in patience towards others.
Go the extra mile today. Have patience and grace towards those you encounter.