Love – there are so many movies, books, and songs written about it.
In my last blog I wrote about the list that God’s Word gives us of what to wear, what to “put on.” This list culminates in “above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony” (Col. 3:14).
Love is a choice. It is a “garment” one can choose to put on. Love is not warm fuzzy feelings, although those are very nice, and I rather enjoy them.
Many years ago, my husband (a very wonderful man) said some things that hurt me (yes, even wonderful people can hurt each other), and when he went to bed I stayed up and prayed.
My prayer went like this,”Ow! Ow! Ow!” (Pause). “What should I do?”
The answer came clearly: “Love him.”
So I chose to “put on love”. To act in a loving manner.
Since then, on occasions when I have felt hurt and am reminded that my response is supposed to be love, I have opened my Bible at 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 to remind myself what love is:
“Love is patient and kind” (two attributes already on the “put on” list), love does not envy or boast” (“humble” – from that same list), “is is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way” (meek), “it is not irritable or resentful” (bearing with others, forgiving others). “It does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (note that doesn’t mean sticking around for abuse. If that is your situation, it is loving to get help). “Love never ends.”
As I read these words, I don’t suddenly feel all lovey-dovey, warm and fuzzy, but I choose to respond in this way, asking God’s help to act patiently, kindly, not irritably, etc.
Every day may we choose to “put on” love – towards everyone, beginning with those close to us (I’m sure my husband has had plenty of occasions to choose to put on love towards me), continuing to others, and ending with our enemies. Yes, God says to do that, too. “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44). For inspiration in that area, see how Betsy Ten Boom does this in the book “The Hiding Place” by her sister Corrie Ten boom. This book is on my “top five books I’ve ever read” list.
We “put on love” simply because this is what God tells us to do, but as an added bonus, you do “reap what you sow” (Gal. 6:7) and so sowing love is a rather good idea.
I can suggest nothing better to do than to go sow some love and to make it a daily habit to clothe ourselves with it towards all with whom we come into contact.