Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.~1 Corinthians 13:4 NIV
I squirmed, as I sat on the wagon seat next to my grandfather. We were headed to the mill with a wagon load of corn to be ground into cornmeal. I was wearing my Sunday best on this hot summer afternoon, and my black patent leather shoes and lacy dress made me feel all stiff and uncomfortable. I did not see any reason to shed my everyday shorts and shirt for Sunday clothes, even if Papa did want to show me off.
I do not specifically remember Papa telling me he loved me, but I knew without being told. There was a security in his love, and I followed him all over the farm. Mother even let me take a jar of ice water to him sometimes, as he worked in the field. Papa was grateful to have a drink of water, especially on hot days, and he loved me bringing it to him. Papa was glad to see me. I could tell by his smile.
Although I was seven years old when he passed away, I remember him well. He was my first best friend. I was blessed to experience my grandfather’s love and care, as well as the love of my parents. They showed us what love looks like. God’s love was lived out in our home, as well as in our little Methodist church. We learned first-hand about the powerful and wonderful love God has for us and about His kindness.
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.~Ephesians 4:32 NASB
As we go about our daily routine, we can make a difference in the lives of people we do not know, and in the lives of those whom we do know. Just a smile for those we meet on the street, or a cheerful greeting, can be a blessing to them. Our kindness to others springs out of a tender heart and is never wasted. God will use it for our good and His glory.Remembering the sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross encourages us to forgive others. When we refuse to forgive, it hinders our relationship with God. #VineWords @Venable_wells #TheFruitofLove Click To Tweet
We are called by God to forgive those who have hurt us. Sometimes it is not easy, but it is necessary. God forgives us and even sent His Son to die in our place. Remembering the sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross encourages us to forgive others. When we refuse to forgive, it hinders our relationship with God.
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.~1 John 4:7-8 NIV
Here are some nuggets of truth on living the love of God:
- We experience God’s love by accepting His free gift of salvation, as well as the gifts of forgiveness and mercy. This frees us to share His love with others.
- “Love is a verb.” Most of us are familiar with that statement; it has become a cliché. Even so, it is true. Jesus expects us to put love into action; it often entails physical sacrifice on our part.
- Matthew 22:37-39 NIV is clear that love for God and for others is not an option: Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
- As believers and followers of Jesus, we owe it to Him and to others to be obedient and to live out the above Scripture. By living out these two commandments, our lives are sure to be enriched.
- First Corinthians 13 is often referred to as the Love Chapter. It is good to make a habit of reading this Scripture often and striving to live by its principles.
- We work so hard to gain material possessions and to achieve great success. However, only love will last forever; these other things are temporal and will pass away.
- We are to put away our selfish nature and to leave our immaturity behind, as we grow in our relationship with God. As we grow closer to God, we gain the ability to live out our love to others.
- Since God is love, we are to live in a way where we show His love to others. As followers of Jesus, we have the opportunity to bless others by modeling His love to them.
- Sometimes loving others is difficult; it is easier to put ourselves first. Instead, we are to put others before ourselves. This is love in action.
- It is easier to love those who look like us, share our faith, or live in our neighborhoods. If we truly love God, we will make it a priority to share His love with everyone, regardless of their circumstances.
We find it easier to love those who love us than we do those who don’t. But what if love demands a sacrifice? Are we willing to get out of our comfort zone to go the extra mile? Are we willing to determine to love others no matter what their circumstances are?
Jesus went the extra mile. Because He loves us with an everlasting love, He laid down His life for you and for me by dying on the cross to die for our sins. He sacrificed His all, so those who love Him and have accepted His free gift of salvation will dwell with Him in eternity.
If you have not ever accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, I invite you to do so today. I would love to know if you have made the decision to follow Him.
Share five ways you can reach out to others in sacrificial love.
Father God, please reveal Your great love to me, as I call upon You. Draw me to You, and guide me into repentance and salvation. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.
Copyright 2020: The Fruit of Love: Author Evelyn Wells: All Rights Reserved
Meet Our Contributor
EVELYN MASON WELLS
Evelyn Mason Wells is an award-winning author who has contributed to Heart Renovation: A Construction Guide to Godly Character (2019 Selah finalist, Lighthouse Bible Studies), Glimmers of Heavenly Light (Faith Books & More), Let the Earth Rejoice (Worthy Inspired), Breaking the Chains (2018 Selah finalist, Lighthouse Bible Studies), Just Breathe (Worthy/Ellie Claire), and Feed Your Soul with the Word of God (Lighthouse Bible Studies).
Find her articles/devotions at: Refresh Bible Study Magazine, and CBN.
Evelyn is a Bible study and devotion writer for VineWords: Devotions and More, and a contributing author to Love Knots: Stories of Faith, Family, and Friendships (VineWords Publishing).
Passionate about glorifying God through her writing and speaking, Evelyn enjoys spending time on short-term mission trips, both domestic and foreign. She was recently blessed with an opportunity to speak/minister in Uganda.
Evelyn loves attending Bible Studies, spiritual retreats, and having good conversation with friends over lunch or a glass of tea. She is also an avid fan of the Georgia Bulldogs and Atlanta Braves. Evelyn enjoys good books, her cats, traveling, and especially spending time with her family.
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