As the summer sun spread its sneaky-hot rays across my neck, the pastor presiding over a dear friend’s wedding reads 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 and I tried to hide my facial expression that was dangerously close to saying: “HERE WE GO AGAIN.” I’m not proud for thinking the world has made the Apostle Paul’s love verse a bit too clichéd. A bit too perky. A bit too unrealistic given the ever-declining rate of marriages that are happy and avoid devolving into divorce.
But the facts are clear: 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 has become a standard at weddings around the world:
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It 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 13:4-7
So when I started to think about topics for this month’s theme IT’S ALL ABOUT LOVE, the first thing I did was challenge my hardened and jaded heart toward the Bible’s showcase love verse.
It took but a nanosecond for God to point out that I had stopped listening to what Paul, a SINGLE MAN, was telling us. And it turns out that 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 was never ONLY about marriage. It is about living with the love of Christ in us and coming out of us.
Every single verse in this most compelling passage presents a searing challenge for every heart. God’s love is the model for how we are to love—everyone, everywhere, all the time.
God loves us like that every day forever without conditions or caveats or footnotes. God’s love for us is PERFECT. And since we are imperfect, we cannot love perfectly as God does.
Everyone needs this type of love, but we will be crushed if our thoughts are expecting it to come to us from another person. God is the only one who can love us perfectly.
Here’s the final takeaway: If we have a right relationship with God and fully experience his deep and unending love, we are instantly equipped to love others as God loves us.
I ask God to help me love others like he loves me.
WHAT ABOUT YOU?
Here’s the key takeaway: If we have a right relationship with God and fully experience his deep and unending love, we are instantly equipped to love others as God loves us.
“And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” Ephesians 3:18-19