Love Looks Like God
If I asked most of you what I Corinthians 13 was about you would say, “Oh, I know that one. That’s the love chapter.” You’re right. It’s the love chapter. Perhaps it was read at your wedding. It was at mine.
What does love look like? Love looks like God.
I John 4:8 He who does not love has not become acquainted with God . . . for God is love. Amplified
Since God is love, I’m going to substitute “God” into I Corinthians 13 for the word love (or charity, as it’s translated in the King James Version) and see what we can learn about the nature of God. I think we might be surprised.
I Corinthians 13:4-8
(God) suffereth long and is kind. KJVClick here for definition: Suffereth:
God doesn’t get out of patience with us. He doesn’t throw up His hands and say, “I’ve just had it with you!” He commanded us to forgive seventy times seven. I suppose if He expects us to forgive the same person 490 times, He will forgive us a few more than that.
(God) is kind. KJV
Unfortunately, the God being projected over many pulpits today is not a kind God. It’s no wonder people don’t want to know that God. Why would they?
Yes, kindness includes discipline. But a good parent doesn’t discipline his child in anger. And he never demeans a child through discipline. I think God’s a better parent than we are. Don’t you?
(God) envieth not KJV
Click here: Envieth:
At first a woman with a jealous husband might feel loved, but that perverted love usually boils over and becomes abusive. Jealousy is a dangerous element in a marriage. If your husband is excessively jealous, it’s all about him—not you.
God is not a jealous husband. He doesn’t get upset if we want some time to ourselves. He doesn’t mind if we have fun. He delights to see us enjoy ourselves.
The type of jealousy God has is not possessive. It’s not about Him. It’s about us. He’s jealous for us. He gets angry when He sees anyone abuse us.
(God) is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display Himself haughtily. Amplified
When someone is haughty, they put themselves above other people. God lowers Himself. He gets beneath us and lifts us up.
(God) is not conceited, arrogant and filled with pride. He is not rude, unmannerly, and does not act unbecomingly. Amplified
God is not rude. Rude people are not interested in other people. They interrupt. They’re not considerate of other’s feelings. They manipulate others by not speaking to them or withholding approval. I’ve had people like that in my life. I would almost rather take a beating than have someone punish me with silence.
God listens to us with genuine interest when we speak. He never wants to embarrass us in front of others. He covers us. He doesn’t put His nose in the air and say, “I’m not speaking to you!” He always speaks. We just have to quiet ourselves enough to hear Him.
(God) does not insist on His own rights or His own way. Amplified
God does not have the attitude, MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY! His motivation is always for our good, for our safety, not just so He can be the boss. Jesus didn’t insist on his rights when He gave up His place beside the Father and came to this earth to die on the cross for our sins.
(God) is not self-seeking; He is not touchy or fretful or resentful. Amplified
God is not “high maintenance.” He is not touchy—sulking and withdrawing from us when we don’t do exactly as He wishes.
Some people use this as a way to manipulate other people. I’ve had a few friends like that. It always made me feel insecure, like I needed to do something to regain the offended person’s love and approval. That type of control is not of God.
(God) takes no account of the evil done to (Him), pays no attention to a suffered wrong.
God does not keep a record of our wrongs. When He forgives us of something He doesn’t throw it back in our faces. Of course, God never forgets anything, but He chooses not to remember it against us.
If we’re keeping a record of offenses, we’re not acting like God. Unfortunately, we usually find it hard to let go of our “you did this” list. And we are the ones who are hurt for it.
(God) does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail
Are we willing to put up with injustice and unrighteousness to make life easier? That’s not love. God is love, but He doesn’t turn a blind eye to the evil in the world. There will be a reckoning—and that’s love too.
(God) bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, (His) hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and (He) endures everything without weakening.
Jesus bore up under the sins of the world. He’s always ready to believe the best about us. It’s sad that we often don’t do the same for our brothers and sisters in Christ. In fact, the opposite is often true.
Do we give up hope? Do we endure without weakening? The only way we can endure is to let God’s love live in us.
(God) never fails.
Sometimes we think He fails because He doesn’t do what we ask of Him. But the truth is God never fails to do what is best for us. He is love.