God is LOVE
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. I John 4:8
So often we look at I Corinthians 13 and try to perfect that love in our lives, as if in our own strength we can love in such a way. But if we reflect on the fact that when we accepted Christ as Savior we have Christ in us the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27), and Christ who is one with the Father has all the attributes of love that the Father has.
As I began to meditate on the fact that God is the one who has perfect love I wrote down what each attribute of love found in I Corinthians 13 means to mean knowing that God loves me in such a way. I didn’t list them all here (to be honest I struggled with what some of them meant in our relationship with God)
- Love is Patient: To think that God is patient with me and half the time I am impatient with myself and yet there is no need. He waits for me and helps me at a pace that I can handle. When I make mistakes He does not get impatient that we are not reaching that expected end fast enough.
- Love is kind: God is kind – gentle – It brings a picture to my mind of Jesus with the little children, how tender He was, and so He treats each one of us.
- Love is not self-seeking: For a couple moments this struck me as contradictory because God is always for His glory right? But then the verses in Romans 8 that God works everything for our good. Our good is that we be transformed to the image of Christ. So He does love for our own good – seeking to transform us into what is best for us, knowing that the best thing for us is to be like Christ
- Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in truth: What would it mean to rejoice in truth? I recall a conversation I had with a friend yesterday, she was telling me how she told a fellow Christian the truth about something and that person got offended. She couldn’t figure out why. What I realized was that sometimes we are offended by truth because sometimes the truth confronts our sin and makes us uncomfortable. But He is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). Because He is truth He always rejoices in that which is good, perfect – TRUE.
- Love is not easily angered: I do not have to fear His wrath. He is not quick tempered. He won’t yell at me for a mistake but will gently correct me.
- Love always protects: To think that my Heavenly Father always protects me. That is a beautiful truth – why then should I ever be afraid? Like the verse in Psalms “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” Psalm 91:4
I am going to close my list there for now, though I have journal-ed much more on this chapter.
What characteristic of God’s love stands out most to you or seems most meaningful to you at the stage of life you are in right now. Feel free to share.