Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous, love does not brag and is not arrogant ~ 1 Corinthians 13:4
I used to think that the LOVE in 1 Corinthians 13:4 is what I have to do. To love, I needed to be patient, to be kind, not to be jealous, not to brag and not to be arrogant. But years of experience informed me that I am NOT patient, NOT kind (not all the time anyway), am jealous sometimes, brag too often and is arrogant most times.
Does this mean I do not have love? This is serious!
Corinthians 13:3, the verse before verse 4, says that if I have all the gifts of the Spirit but do not have love, it profits me nothing and I am nothing but a clanging cymbal. I don’t want to be a clanging cymbal nor be nothing. But when I measure my performance with love, I fit the bill of a clanging cymbal.
What can this mean?
Can I rationalize away what the Bible says about love? I can’t because I believe it is the Word of God.
So what can this mean?
I looked at the life of Jesus and discovered that Jesus is patient, is kind, is not jealous, does not brag, and he is not arrogant.
He is Love.
If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but do not have Jesus, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to move mountains, but do not have Jesus, I am nothing.
If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have Jesus, it profits me nothing.
Now I know I am not unprofitable because I have Jesus. I am not a clanging cymbal because I have Jesus.
He is my exceedingly great reward. Hallelujah! Amen!