"Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up." 1 Corinthians 13:4
In our Sunday School class we have been studying God's nature and characteristic of love. God is love. He doesn't just posses it. He doesn't just carry it around in His pocket. But it is who He is at the very core of His being-- love. When Jesus was on earth, He showed us what the Father was like. Jesus demonstrated love, the Father's love, everywhere He went and in everything He did- from the "smallest" miracle to the cross.
When you read 1 Corinthians 13, especially verses four through seven, you see the definition of what love is and what it isn't. When you read it, you are also looking into the face of Jesus. Jesus was patient. He was kind. He wasn't proud or boastful, envious or jealous. He didn't keep a record of wrongs that were done to Him. Through His fulfillment of the definition, He gave us an example and pattern to follow.
The word Christian simply means "Christ-like". We are to follow Jesus- not only in obedience to His commands- but through imitation. We are to do what He did and don't do what He didn't. We are also His children. Therefore, we are to be Christ-like in reflecting the nature and character of God as Christ- who is the Son of God- did. 1 Corinthians 13 is also an evaluation tool to determine whether we are walking in love, living according to love and reflecting God's love.
When you read 1 Corinthians 13 from now on, I hope you will look at it differently- not as just a definition, but as an example which you are to follow and as an evaluation to determine if you are. After all, the true sign of your Christianity is not in your profession of being one, but in your demonstration of love.
Have a great day. Are you following Jesus' example of love?
For further reading:
1 Corinthians 13
John 3:16; 13:35; 14:8,9
1 John 4:7,8