[Love] does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:5-7
The Bible tells us “love” is an action verb. We began to explore that fact last week in the post Living 1 Corinthians 13:4. Verses 5-7 continue to give us a better picture of how love in action should look.
Love does not dishonor: Does it seem like the couples on TV sitcoms go for the easy laugh at another’s expense? Do they mirror your life? The days you’re frustrated, do you tell a friend all the things wrong with your spouse? Don’t. Love does not paint a poor picture of another. Love shelves the putdowns.
Love is not self-seeking: The next time you’re sticking hard to your guns, ask yourself: “Is this best for me or is it best for my family?” Sometimes it may be one and the same. If it’s not, think hard on your motivation. Love is not selfish.
Love is not easily angered: How short is your fuse? Not every battle is worth fighting. Not every perceived slight is worth pulling the gloves on. Love is not quick tempered.
Love keeps no record of wrongs: The argument you had last month may be the perfect example of the point you’re trying to make today. Before the words “remember the time when you…” come out of your mouth, stop. Forgive. Forget. Stop keeping score. Love doesn’t hold a grudge or revisit past wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil: Have your inner thoughts ever entertained the phrase “Well, I’ll show him!” When we’re angry, thoughts of revenge seep in easily. That’s a good time to pray and let that anger go. Love doesn’t get even.
Love always: There it is. After a long list of what love does not do, the verses return to the affirmative. This is the good love does: protects, trusts, hopes, preserves. More importantly did you notice that each of those things is preceded by the same word? Always. Love doesn’t just sometimes protect. Love doesn’t just trust when it’s easy. It doesn’t lose hope and give up when times get rough. Love always does those things. It’s not always easy to do them, but with prayer, love finds a way. Always.
Challenge: Read 1 Corinthians 13:5-7 this week. Do you have any unloving habits to break? What positive expressions of love will you exhibit?