I need a refresher course in love
Ever feel testy — like in the way you respond to humans around you? I had noticed that my rough edges were being displayed more than the godly edges that I wanted, so I turned to 1 Corinthians 13 — the love chapter. Obviously I was running low on the main ingredient that covers all rough edges.
After I passed the first three verses that gives a definition of “being nothing,” I slowly pondered what real love is. Verse four, without lengthy introductory words, assaulted my level of love.
“Love is patient.” I had flashbacks of my impatience in seeing God answer some of my “aging” prayers. I saw me standing in grocery lines losing patience with customers who searched s-l-o-w-l-y for the correct change. I remembered red lights and stop signs where fellow drivers take forever to heed the go signals. I remembered the annoyance I experience when I see Othel leave multiple pairs of shoes by his bed.
After repenting over my lack of patience and realizing a simple serving of love would have remedied all those experiences, I moved on — slowly.
“Love is kind.” Surely I could count kindness as a character trait, but what about when my path crosses those individuals with attitudes? Do I respond with kindness? When an impatient driver honks at my senior-level driving, do I think kind thoughts or reply mentally in a shower of rebuffs? Maybe I’m just kind to those who are kind to me. I’m immediately convicted. That interpretation is not what Scripture teaches.
“Love is not rude.” Certainly I never intend to be rude to anyone, unless they happen to be one of those pesky, worrisome telephone solicitors. Their interference in my time and my space exasperates me. That’s certainly rudeness on their part, but does that give me allowance to hang up on them? Rudeness for rudeness?
“Love does not envy.” My spirit moaned audibly as I thoughtfully sought God’s score for me in this area. My envy wasn’t even a day old. My team, Ole Miss, was a powerhouse SEC baseball champion, but lost the “winner take all” game in the road to Omaha. My disappointment was amplified when Envy reported that State had won their game that would keep them on the road to Omaha.
Was I guilty again? Yes, Envy pointed his twisted finger at me and sneered. His green color had begun to seep into the room and make a trail toward me.
The chapter was just getting started, but I closed my Bible. The text was heavy. I must absorb it in small portions and ask God to allow me a refresher course in love.
Letters to Camille Anding can be sent to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS, 39602, or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.