Monday, July 16, 2012

Love in Action

If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

1 Corinthians 13

Many weddings have these words read, but how do the apply after the marriage? Below is an invented checklist intended to be a self-check. I'm only looking at myself here. I'm not measuring how my hubby is doing, I'm his wife, not his judge. I control my actions, not his. It is my belief that I'm not supposed to use the scriptures as ammo to point out how others are failing, but as a mirror to see how I'm doing. This isn't saying that we aren't supposed to tell others that there is One way, One truth, and One life, but we are supposed to be examining ourselves first.

Verse 1-3: If I know the best way to do things, but don't have love, I come off as overbearing. If I notice flaws, but don't speak in love, I come off as critical. If I do the right actions without love, I provide empty gestures.

Verse 4: Am I patient with my hubby when I am sick, tired, busy, or distracted?
Am I kind to him on his difficult days?
Am I jealous of his success; do I brag about myself?
Can I admit my mistakes and accept correction?

Verse 5: Do I lift my hubby up, with my actions and words?
Am I selfish? Am I after my own pleasure?
Am I controlling my temper? Is my anger justified?
Do I use past fights as ammo? When I say I forgive my hubby, do I bring up these incidents again?

Verse 6: Am I glad when bad things happen to my hubby?
Am I grateful to share truth with my hubby?

Verse 7: Do I *ALWAYS* protect my hubby?
Do I *ALWAYS* trust my hubby?
Do I *ALWAYS*  hope for the best for him and *ALWAYS*  believe that we will stay married?
When our marriage gets hard or life gets difficult, do I *ALWAYS* persevere?

Verses 8-10: Does my love depend on  my circumstances or is it a conscious choice I make despite bad circumstances? 

Verse 11-12: Am I growing in maturity, in faith, in love? Am I learning how to be a believer, how to be a wife?

Verse 13: Do I have Faith? Hope? Love? 

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