We attended our cousin’s wedding on the farm over the weekend. It was beautiful. Her brother, another cousin, performed the lovely ceremony.
It’s 1 Corinthians 13. It’s also called the “Love Chapter.” (Our cousin emphasized the word “love” with a humorous, long drawl. I’ll never be able to say “Love Chapter” again without saying it that way!)
As he shared, there’s nothing in this passage that speaks of marriage. Sure, the words apply to marriage, but they apply to loving others in general.
Below is a piece of The Message translation of the “Love Chapter.” The full version is here. As you read it, consider how it relates to you in how you love others.
1 Corinthians 13:1-8, 13
1 If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.
2 If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.
3-7 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.
Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
8 Love never dies…
13 …Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly.
And the best of the three is love.
Oh, how I fall short of the definition of love here. How many times have I flown off the handle? How many times do I care for myself more than for others? Do I always look for the best? Put up with anything? Never look back?
I fall flat on my face in all of these things!
But this post isn’t meant to make us feel we are without hope. We DO have hope. We cannot love this way on our own, but we can with God’s help. We will try, we will fail, but with God, we can learn, grow, and love through His love.
How different would our homes, our workplaces, our schools, our country, our lives, our world be if everyone followed this model, or at least attempted to? Can you imagine??
Verse 13 sums it all up…
Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly and love extravagantly.
Today, Day 7 of 31 Days of Loving God & Loving Others, may we each ask God to help us with these three things.
What a difference it can make in our little corners of the world!
…And the best of the three is love.
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