Saturday, October 12, 2013
Love is kind. The second character of love. As we have mentioned before love is an action; so this character of love is also an action. There are some words that we can associate with what it means to be kind. The first would be gentleness, I am using this one first for it seems that if one is practicing being patient, then kindness would start manifesting itself, hopefully. So gentleness is more than refraining... It is that of be understanding and caring. Now here is an example, some people have that gentleness, calmness when dealing with animals, but remember it is a lot more than that. The next word would be compassion, to sympathize with someone. Now it is not only feeling bad about what has happened to someone but to be active in helping... Here is what I think about when I think about, kindness, when you hear someone say, " you were so kind to do that..." It's an action being done, even just being prayer. Another words that is associated with kindness would be mercy. This I am going to link to situations that arise from some ones wrong choices... Even though it is not limited to that... but sometimes one needs to be shown mercy for something they have done. That kindness needs to be there. Now this is when we need to work on kindness. You see it might not be affecting you... but you know about the "wrong" if you will and the feeling of resentment... comes. So put on kindness, fight all the other feelings and action. For our God is merciful to us, look what is said in Lam. 3:22 "The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning great is your faithfulness." This is a great verse about love and what we are looking at; just like God we need to be full of mercy, full of kindness. One more verse to demonstrate this, Matt. 9:36 "When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd."
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
We have been looking at the verse John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." There is a very important word for why God would send His Son to pay the price for our short comings...sin. That word would be love. Now when we think of love, if you are like me, some things come into mind. Love for my wife, children, extended family and even some friends. We will think of romance, sex, love of certain foods, possessions and the love of certain activities. For us that use the English language the word love is used in a very broad way as mentioned above. But is that the way that the word love is used in our verse or better yet; how is it used in our verse and what does it mean? So first let me put out three Greek word used for love, The first would be, agape(agapan), the second philo(philien) and the third eros. Now the third eros, sexual love we will not deal with. The second philo means, brotherly love, freindship. Now agape, let's call this God's love, it is unselfish love, a love that is dedicated to something no matter what. So what is love is still the question; love is an action it is more than just words. So what actions show love? Remember we are not including eros. Now before we get to those actions that show love let us not confuse love with lust, a strong desire. The best place that describes love is found in 1Corinthians 13:4-7 let's include part of verse 8. Verse 4 "Love is patient" would be the first character, or part that makes up what love is. Patient is an interesting word, it involves a few meanings like not acting hastily, bearing pains and trails calmly, steadfast despite opposition, manifesting forbearance under provocation or strain. So here are the first actions that demonstrate love. Not acting hastily, some of us are in a hurry most of the time, go, go , go. And when something comes up or when someone (usually someone close) doesn't perform or do... what we think needs to be done.. or doesn't do it "right" ; you know what happens. For some it happens in a big way for others their inpatient is shown in a little way (their good at hiding it). Now those instances of not performing are part of everyday life of doing things, but sometimes things are done a miss, on purpose if you will or even unawares that test our patience. So patient is what we all need to do to demonstrate love. Instead of getting wound up stop and think... come along side help if needed and forgive if needed. Now do not think that this is something that is easy... that we don't react fast, we wait a few minutes... some time you might need to be patient for a long time,hours, days, weeks, or even years. Think how patiently God waited for you just for salvation to be accepted, never mind how patient He is for us now as we try to follow His ways. This first character of love is not easy to do but let us all make a big effort to be more patient.