By Pastor Nissa Peterson
Chatfield and Root Prairie
Today I bought Valentine’s cards for my kid’s school classes- because if I don’t buy them early, I’m making a frantic shopping trip Febuary 12 and nobody wants that. And even over a month before Valentine’s day, there was a whole aisle of red and pink choices — because the world is ready to talk about love!
As followers of Jesus, we think about love a lot, too – although in somewhat different ways than you find in the Valentine aisle at the grocery store. I remind you about what Paul says about love in 1Corinthians 13:
Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or 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 in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
This way that Paul describes love is truly a delightful ideal. But it strikes me that this description of love can also be very challenging in real life relationships. When we each take a look at ourselves and the ways we show up in our marriages and family relationships, we might be quickly discouraged how easy it is to fall short of this list of virtues – as we try to love one another:
Paul writes: “Love is patient; love is kind…”
Already, even with these first two ideals: patience and kindness, we see how easy it is to fall short: how often we can be impatient or unkind to one another…
Paul continues: “Love is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”
In our relationships, even though you love, cherish and respect one another, we are also often keenly aware that the people we love are not perfect. And that means that from time to time, perhaps more often than we’d like, we’re going to make mistakes in relationships. Each of you is going to do and say things that are the complete opposite of everything Paul describes in 1 Corinthians 13 about love. We’re going to disappoint and even hurt one another, despite even the best of intentions.
The good news is, that we rejoice in our Lord Jesus Christ, the source of all goodness and love, who accompanies you each step of the way!
Because even when each of us sin and fall short of the ideals about love and relationships, we can always find forgiveness in Jesus Christ.
Because we might not always be, but Jesus is patient; Jesus is kind; Jesus is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. Jesus does not insist on his own way; Jesus is not irritable or resentful; Jesus does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. Jesus bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Jesus’ love never ends.