“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, love never loses faith, is always helpful, and endures through every circumstance.” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
We hear this scripture at church, at weddings, and even at engagements. It’s a universal scripture, but it brings up the question of are we really LOVING people like the scripture says or we just going through the motions of what we think it’s supposed to be? We say we want this amazing, super happy, over flowing with passion love but sometimes we don’t know how to manifest that in real time. So let’s ask ourselves, would I want to be with me? But this time, don’t look at your accomplishments. Don’t say “who wouldn’t want to be with me? I’m in school, I have a job, my own car, my own money, my own everything – I’m a boss with or without them”. Because love is not about what you have – it’s about you GIVE. And if we’re honest, a lot of us are giving attitude, anger, hurt, betrayal, disrespect, and un-loyalty to those who don’t deserve it. We can sing love is patient and kind on Sunday morning and cuss our boyfriend or girlfriend later that evening because they’re busy or by reminding them of the things they did in the past.
I’ll be honest and say I wasn’t always the best at this (I’m still working). Sometimes being the product of a single mom, you can go two ways based on what you see: not wanting a man or having crazy high expectations and expecting them to meet every single one. So I chose the second. I thought that if I had this bomb list of things I wanted in a man that he would magically appear and meet everything. I had everything from a minimum GPA to coming to church with me faithfully. But I realized two things: one, I didn’t meet everything on my list. I was the girl who said I have all I need so if I’m going to have a boyfriend he needs to surpass that. But in my ignorance, I was only thinking about materialistic things, how he could enhance me, and how he could enhance us (which I was thinking would pretty much enhance me). So I would treat the guys I talked to like I could take them or leave them. Because that way if anything happened I wouldn’t need to take time to cry and heal and all of that. I could just move on.
BUT THAT’S NOT LOVE. That is selfish, boastful, proud, self-demanding, “let me cut you as soon as you don’t seem like your attention and what not is on me”. You need someone who produces the Fruits of the Spirit and you need to produce the same (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control). So if that’s your story or if you felt anything close to it, stop now. You don’t want to lose something amazing over your pride or your past. God’s love surpasses all of that. And because God loves you with forgiveness, care, faithfulness, selflessness, and most importantly not counting how many times we’ve neglected him or hurt his feelings. So give that same agape love to the person you’re with. No its not an easy battle, but it’s worth it.
I love you,