Wednesday, July 04, 2012

What's the Difference?

Lately, as the result of different things transpiring in my heart and life, I have been confronting this question. What difference does it all make? In other words, has being born again, made brand new in the image and likeness of Christ, made a difference in the way I do life? If so, what does that difference look like in my daily life?

One discernable difference should be in the way I love.

Scripture every believer is undoubtedly familiar with is 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a:

Love is kind and patient, never jealous, boastful, proud or rude.
Love isn't selfish or quick tempered. It doesn't keep a record or wrongs that others do.
Love rejoices in the truth but not in evil.
Love is always supportive, loyal, hopeful, and trusting. (CEV)

Love is patient and kind;
Love does not envy or boast;
It is not arrogant or rude.
It does not insist on its own way;
It is not irritable or resentful;
It does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never gives up. (ESV)

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.
Love doesn't have a swelled head. Love doesn't force itself on others.
Love isn't always "me first". Love doesn't fly off the handle.
Love doesn't keep score of the sins of others. Love doesn't revel when others grovel.
Love takes pleasure in the flowering of truth. Love puts up with anything.
Love trust God always. Love always looks for the best. Love never looks back.
Love keeps going on to the end. Love never dies.

I know I was a bit redundant here and yet I do not apologize for belaboring the point. Love is one thing our lives as believers, is to be deeply marked by. Love looks like something and the Lord made it as plain as the nose on our faces.

Let us begin today to be love to the people we live with, work with and coexist with.

Loving, gracious Father, help us to love others as You have so loved us. Even when it's hard Father, may we chose to remember we have been bought with so great a price. Even when the one you bring before us to love isn't all that nice or pleasant to be around, may we resist what comes natural to us and love them, whether we feel like it or not. Your own humility and weakness provided for us a way to live love and to be lovely.


Stephanie Paul, wife and mother of two grown children. An "instrument of change" in the Redeemer's Hand, in the lives of wounded and hurting women. Currently serving as a part of the Addiction Recovery Team at America's Keswick as Woman of Character Program Director.

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