How Do We Show God's Love? (Part 2)
Third love does not parade itself, is not puffed up. There are versions of the Bible that use the word vaunt instead of parade. Someone who parades or vaunts themselves want to feel self- important, talk about themselves incessantly, boast about what they have done, believes they are better than those around them, and rarely take interest in others’ lives. We all know people like this and even some of them claim to be Christians. Philippians 2:3 says Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Instead of putting down the people around us or making them feel smaller than us, by making ourselves sound better than them, we should be up lifters and encouragers.
Fourth love does not behave rudely. To behave in way that is rudely means one acts unseemly, unbecoming, or disgraceful. God does not list every irritating and unseemly habit in the Bible, but He leaves it up to us to examine where we can improve. 2 Corinthians 5:20 reads Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. Therefore, our behavior now must fit our description as “ambassadors for Christ.”
Fifth love does not seek its own. Someone who seeks their own is selfishly focused on their own needs and goals, and is not genuinely interested in other’s lives. This is similar to one who parades themselves. Romans 12:1 reads I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. We all can do things that show that we are not seeking our own. A few examples are people who sacrifice time, help someone with car repairs, mow an elderly person’s yard, visit a sick person or someone who just needs a visitor, or make a meal for someone who can’t. We are not limited to this list, for there is more that we all can do to help people.
Sixth love is not provoked. We live in an age in which people take offense over the smallest things. The problem is that we are made in the flesh, which means we make mistakes. Christians must be ready to forgive when someone wrongs them or ask for forgiveness when they have wronged someone. Instead of immediately becoming defensive or jumping to conclusions, stop and think about what the person is saying.
Seventh love thinks no evil. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19 reads Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. If we are striving to be like Christ, who does not hold trespasses of people against them, we must learn to reconcile with others. We are not to plot against someone else or wishing evil upon them.
Eighth love does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth. We live in a society that enjoys when people “get what they deserve” otherwise revenge. True Christians do not rejoice in the trials of others. We should rejoice in the truth of God and be blessed in what we receive, as a result of, knowing that truth.
I want to leave you with one question: How can you show Gods love?