I’m drinking my morning coffee, and I’m thinking about an assignment that was given last night in bible school. (Thanks, Lino) I’ve actually done this assignment before, but it is an awesome reminder of how we are to love. The assignment is to read 1 Corinthians 13:48 in the amplified version of the bible, and while reading it, you substitute your own name in the place of the word ‘love.’ The point of the assignment is to pray and say this A LOT. And I need to re-read many of these lines, A LOT. But it refreshingly reminds me of how love of God looks, and it’s like balm to my soul. The tough part: this is how love is supposed to look, and and live in ME! I think about Jesus, and he was the picture of perfect love, and it motivates me to act like He did. We can look at His life and see this love LIVED out. Nothing in his life indicated otherwise. But whew, what a tall order for me!
While enjoying my coffee, I’m thinking about the people who have influenced me the most in my life. All of these people demonstrated this kind of love to me. I was not the most loveable kid, teenager, or even young adult! (ask my mom!) If there was a rule, I was sure it was made for me to break. But the people who really coaxed me along were NOT the ones who beat me over the head with rules, but rather the ones who demonstrated this enduring love to me! I think about how stinkin’ hard this must have been, but oh, what an impact this love had on me. Love is the key. It sounds cliche, but it’s tough to live out. Can you imagine if people lived this kind of love? Wow. That’s all I can say…wow.
So if you want to do this with me, I’ll type out the amplified bible verses below, and in the blanks just insert your name. I’ve actually copied it, put it in a ziplock baggie, and hung it in my shower. (thanks for that idea, Katy!) I also put a copy in my visor of my car. While showering, @ stop lights (not while driving!) I’ll say this prayer. And as I’ve experienced before, it changes my attitude! It gets easier to love! Try it! Let me know how it goes for you.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
_________ endures long and _________ is patient and kind; _________ never is envious or boils over with jealousy, _________ is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display her/himself haughtily. _________ is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); _________ is not rude (unmannerly) and _________ does not act unbecomingly. _________ (God’s love in us) does not insist on her/his own rights or her/his own way, for she/he is not self-seeking; _________ is not touchy or fretful or resentful; _________ takes no account of the evil done to her/him, she/he pays no attention to a suffered wrong. _________ does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. _________ bears up under anything and everything that comes, _________ is ever ready to believe the best of every person, _________’s hopes are fadeless under all circumstance, and _________ endures everything (without weakening). _________ never fails (never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end.)
Whew! Honestly, this is really tough to live out…BUT, just know this is our only command. To love. And with God’s grace and strength in us, we can do ALL things! I pray this impacts you.