Week of January 30, 2022
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
Love is patient; love is kind ...
(1 Corinthians 13:4a, NRSV)
Love is patient. Love is kind.
When I love you, I will be patient towards you. I will wait for you. I will hold out hope for you. Behavior is only one part of this. Your last-minute running around getting ready may irritate the tar out of me, and I'm not saying a patient person won't speak up (kindly – we'll get to kindness in a second). But I will have big-picture patience towards you. I will believe in you, unwaveringly, and I will be there for you.
When I am kind to you, it will need to be about you, not me. There is built-in good-feeling-kickback when we are kind to each other, usually. But kindness has to be about the recipient. I am kind to you when I think from your perspective, from within your shoes on your path, and act accordingly. If I get it wrong, I try again. (Here is patience again – they are connected!) Kindness requires patience and persistence.
Love behaves patiently toward the beloved. Love behaves kindly toward the beloved. We can sit around and feel all day long, but patience is action (or restraint), and kindness is action with a focus on the other. Love is when we provide these things.
May we be patient and kind as we seek to be God's love in this beautiful and hurting world.
God, give us patience and fill us with kindness so that our lives are examples of what your love is really like. Amen.
Lyricist and Poet
Christ United Methodist Church