Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:7
Love. It’s a word we have come to use so casually in our society. We say “I love chicken.” “I love this outfit.” “I love my job.”
It is also a word we decide we no longer feel. “I fell out of love with him.” “I don’t love her anymore.”
This definition from I Corinthians paints a different picture of what love is.
Love bears all things. Lexicon :: Strong’s G4722 – stegō 1. to protect or keep by covering, to preserve: 2. to cover over with silence; to keep secret; to hide, conceal: i. e. hides and excuses, the errors and faults of others; 3. by covering to keep off something which threatens, to bear up against, hold out against, and so to endure, bear, forbear
Clearly, with just this small part of what love is, I don’t love chicken. I am not protecting it; I’m eating it. I don’t love my clothing. I’m not preserving my clothing. I take care of them, but I am wearing it and will eventually donate or discard them. Same thing with jobs. One day we all eventually leave our jobs. Whether from moving on to another job , retiring or death. When something upsets me at work, I don’t try to hide it; I try to change it.
Love believes all things. Believing is trust. I don’t trust a chicken. I have tried to catch a chicken. I’ve also bit into uncooked chicken. Neither leaves me trusting chicken. I don’t trust my clothes. I have gotten a hole in my pants. I have lost a button. I have outgrown my clothing. None of that leaves me believing all things about my clothes. I don’t believe all things about a job. I have been cheated out of a paycheck. I have been fired. I have seen some pretty bad things happen at jobs. So, I don’t fully trust a job.
Love hopes all things. Hope is a a feeling of confidence. I don’t always have confidence in chicken, in clothes or in a job.
Love endures all things. Lexicon :: Strong’s G5278 – hypomenō to endure, bear bravely and calmly: ill treatments. Again, I don’t endure chicken. I wasn’t calm when I tried to catch one. It only takes one mouthful of chicken and I am not bravely bear eating raw chicken. I might endure a hole in my pants for a minute, but I will as soon as possible change. I might endure through two weeks after giving notice at a job, but there are things that I won’t endure even if I really like my coworkers or boss.
True love, God’s love doesn’t allow us to fall out of it. Thank God, because I am sure more than once I have given Him reason to fall out of love with me! When we love with His love we endure through things. We bear what we would prefer not to. We believe the best, not the worst when we love someone. We hope for the best for those we love, even if it may no be us. That is what love does.
I don’t believe that love is something that we can do on our own. We need God to love like Him. We need eyes to see the best in someone, especially when we are hurting. We need to trust God can still work in the impossible situations, when it looks like all our hope is in a lost cause. God can, if we let Him, love through us. When we let His love flow through us, the following verse promises Love never fails. It is not enough to just read about love, we have to let God live it out through us.
Prayer – Lord, thank you for loving me so completely that you sent Jesus to die for me. Thank You for allowing Him to bear all things for me, so that I can learn to bear all things. Thank You for believing in me, even when I don’t believe in myself so that I can believe the best and hope for others. Thank You Jesus for enduring the cross so I can learn to endure. Help me to love like You and when I am falling short to let You love through me. In Jesus name. Amen.