“Love conquers all” is a term we often hear. Where there’s love, any differences, obstacles, and challenges can be resolved and overcome.
But simply feeling the “love” isn’t going to magically smooth things over, especially when we tend to rub each other the wrong way. Just like the church that Paul was writing to in 1 Corinthians, we can get sucked into all sorts of conflict and hurt one another because of the differences in our roles, gifts, personalities, and opinions.
Which is why we need love to keep us together–love that is “patient and kind”, and “keeps no records of wrongs” (1 Corinthians 13:4-5). Love that shows forgiveness, grace, and mercy in the most difficult situations. We can be accomplished in many ways, but without love, everything we do is meaningless.
When 1 Corinthians 13 feels like an impossible to-do list, let’s remember: love is the fruit of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit will help us love well, by softening our hearts and reminding us, again and again, that because God first loved us (1 John 4:19), we too can love others.
Some questions for you to think over:
- How have you experienced the 1 Corinthians 13 love as shown to you by God and other people?
- How can you work towards passing the same kind of love to others? What would you want to pray about, to help you bear this fruit of love?
- What would it look like to see this love play out in different ways–and not just romantic love?