In my last post I have stated that being patient sometimes is hard and implies suffering. Where other versions use the word ‘patient’, the KJV has: ‘Charity suffereth long.”
Now where is patience going to lead us? We remain calm even though this may require great discipline. Yet what is happening inside us? Are we boiling hot? Are we going to explode thereafter?
The second phrase in 1 Corinthians 13:4 refers to our reaction having exercised patience. Many English translations say: “Love is kind.”
Kindness leads us way beyond the idea of merely refraining from punishing somebody. If patience makes us think of what a loving person would not do, being kind refers to words, gestures, actual behaviour and activities.
Love is patient, love is kind.
Love is more than just saying: I don’t mind.
Without love, as for others’ needs I may be virtually blind.
How can we learn to love?
Love is patient, love is kind.
Kindness may imply
Giving a helping hand,
Showing somebody the way to the Promised Land
And teaching others how not to build their lives on sinking sand.
Lord God, please teach me the ways of love.
May my life be governed by your Spirit from above!
Let me receive your word as a seed on fruitful ground.
May it be truthfully said about me that in my attitudes and feelings I am heavenwards bound!
(Cf. Matthew 7,24-27; Matthew 13:23)
Recently I have been reworking my categories on this blog site. Now you can easily find posts ordered by scripture reference. If for example you want to find out what I have written about ‘1 Corinthians 13:1’ you just click on the category.
As I have been working on my categories I realised that I have had a good number of posts on patience so far. So today I am going to conclude this section.
For some time I wanted to write a post based on the rendering of the King James Version. Where other translations say: “Love is patient”, the KJV has: “Love suffereth long”.
You may agree with me that being patient at least at times implies suffering. You just bear certain reactions or activities of others. You refrain from retaliating.
As you seek to assess or fathom how another person might feel about things, you dislike you perhaps allow some emotional disturbance into your own life. As you refuse hasty judgments or bias to govern your thoughts, you allow things to touch and affect yourself. This may be uncomfortable. Trying to look at things from somebody else’s point of view can be hard and a real challenge at times.
Whenever you feel with others, who have particular needs, you kind of allow their suffering into your own hemisphere of emotions. Now the question is how far will you go on that? Where are your personal limits?
St. Paul here says: “Love suffereth long”. If we were to be governed by that kind of love, this would imply being pretty consistent in our feeling with others.
One way to learn this kind of love is prayer. You place other people’s needs before God. You keep in mind that God is almighty. He has ways to help we may not even think of.
As you pray and intercede for other men and women you will slowly learn to look at them with God’s eyes and from His perspective. In prayer you begin to contemplate God’s love for others.