Every year, in January, instead of making a list of resolutions, I pick a word. A word by which I try and live my life. Last year’s word was Bold. And boy did I need that word last year!
But yesterday God sort of turned me inside out. And He brought that word I had ignored in January back in my mind.
He brought me to 1 Corinthians 4…you know the verse.
“Love is patient, love is kind.”
Chances are pretty good that you’ve heard this passage before. I myself have heard it at least 2 dozen times. But to tell you the truth, I don’t think I’ve ever read these verses outside the context of a wedding ceremony and I definitely wasn’t listening. I’ve always considered it “the wedding verse.” Cringe worthy words for any singleton to hear.
So instead of hearing “Love is not rude, is not selfish and does not get upset with others” I’ve always heard… love is blah, blah, blah bride and love is blah, blah, blah groom.
And I missed the point.
Since it was the “wedding verse” it didn’t have anything to do with me. I tuned it out. Everyone around me would tear up and there I was rolling my eyes.
But this morning God said “stop it! Get your fingers out of your ears and listen.”
And dude! If God speaks to ya…you listen!!
Love is not just for brides and grooms. (Duh!) Love is meant for all God’s children. We were created to show love and give love and accept love.
And maybe I haven’t done the best job at loving. Not just strangers and enemies, but friends and family.
Another truth…I have a very hard time accepting love. Part of me still believes that maybe I don’t deserve it. And if I think that about myself…what does that mean for how I see other people?
This inferiority complex is a problem. I go to a party, I feel out of place. I see an actor I admire, I think there’s no way they’d want to talk to me. I have a crush on a boy and I think, well they’d never like me so what’s the point. And if I think I’m beneath other people, there must be part of me that thinks there are others who are beneath me.
Whoosh! I just got punched in the heart big time!
This is not the Christ-like perspective that God wants from me. He didn’t put that in me. That garbage came from somewhere else. And I’m not loving that it’s in there…waiting to strike.
The good news is, it’s never too late to change perspective. It’s never too late to make a resolution or turn over a new leaf.
So I’m turning. And I’m starting by rereading 1 Corinthians 4. Nope, I’m not at a wedding. I’m not wearing a bridesmaid dress and no one is standing at the altar except for me.
And I’m not standing anymore…
“Love is patient and kind.
Love is not jealous, it does not brag and it is not proud.
Love is not rude, is not selfish and does not get upset with others.
Love does not count up wrongs that have been done.
Love takes no pleasure in evil, but rejoices over the truth.
Love patiently accepts all things.
It always trusts, always hopes and always endures.
Love never ends.”
My eyes aren’t rolling anymore. I’m not snickering or laughing.
I’m doing what I should have done at the beginning of the year. I’m making Love my word! I’m choosing Love. And not cringing or “bleck” ing when I say it.
We serve a loving God. A gracious God. But also a God of mystery. Not sure where this choosing Love thing will take me, but I’m just along for God’s ride. So I’m not gonna ask questions! I’m just gonna choose to love. And if you see me in a moment where I’m not being loving…I give you permission to call me on that! Part of loving is being accountable. And now I am!
What’s your word?