by Ebi Philips

I give you a new commandment: that you should love one another. Just as I have loved you, so you too should love one another.By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you love one another if you keep on showing love among yourselves.(Jhn 13:34-35 amp)

A young lady who just got born again and was zealously studying the bible to know more about Jesus and appropriate Christian conduct, came to me one day looking exasperated and confused. When I inquired what the matter was, she said there were just too many rules a Christian had to live by and she was worried how she would commit all of them to memory, let alone keep them. I smiled generously at her, relived that there was nothing terribly wrong. Then I showed her our opening scripture- Jhn 13:34-35. I told her she could keep it simple by walking in love. Jesus said its when we love one another, that we show ourselves to be His disciples. He did not stop there, but went further to explain to us in Mark 12:31, the quality of love He expects us to show to our neighbor- love your neighbor as yourself. Simply put, do unto others as you would have them do unto you (Lk 6:31).
Apostle Paul, in 1corth 13:1-8 (amp), explained in detail the importance and meaning of love. I remember the first time I read his words in this chapter, I was blown away. He made it quite clear that there was nothing that we could ever do that would amount to anything before the Lord, except we walked in love. we could speak in tongues forever or give to charity every last bit we own or even possess wonderful spiritual gifts and it would be considered worthless if we did not walk in love (1 corth:1-3 amp). It was the first time I realized that although spiritual gifts were wonderful and great, it was nothing if love was not in place in our lives. I also realized how high love ranked in God’s own eyes and how little I knew about this kind of love. Paul’s description of love- God’s kind of love- is so explicit and detailed. Some of his most profound descriptions that inspire me in 1corth 13:1-8 (amp) are:
-and if I have sufficient faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God's love in me) I am nothing (a useless nobody). Verse 2
-Even if I dole out all that I have to the poor in providing food, and if I surrender my body to be burned or in order that I may glory, but have not love (God's love in me), I gain nothing. Verse 3
-Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; verse 5
-it takes no account of the evil done to it it pays no attention to a suffered wrong verse 5
-Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything without weakening. Verse 7
It would be worth your read, if you take time out to read this 1corth13:1-8 on your own. You will discover how God expects us to live and behave in our relationship with others- to be tirelessly patient, continuously forgiving no matter what, not to be unnecessarily suspicious, never envious/jealous and totally selfless. When I had read these words, at first I felt it just wasn’t fair for God to expect all these of me regardless of the attitude of others; but the Holy Spirit opened my eyes to 1corth 13:8. It says love never fails! The path of love is the path of victory because when you walk in love in any situation, you cannot fail, you will succeed. It so gladdened my heart to discover that I am the one who actually benefits by walking in love. This brings to mind an inspiring scripture in Jude: 21 (amp). It says Guard and keep yourself in the love of God. When you walk in love, you actually guard and shield yourself from the enemy. God’s love makes a defense around us that to demon can tear down.
You want a change in that bitter relationship between you and your spouse? Walk in love regardless of their attitude. You seem not to be getting through to your child? Walk in love! You are getting frustrated because of your over bearing boss? Walk in love! Friends, choose to love as Christ has instructed us and you will get the victory in that situation. Sometimes it may look like its just not humanly possible to walk in this quality of love but then remember that God’s love has been deposited in our hearts by the holy spirit(Rm 5:5) so that we can be enabled to love like He does- unconditionally, selflessly, faithfully and perseveringly. Truth be said, there’s absolutely no way we could ever love like this except we yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit to help us. It is also imperative that we spend time thinking/ pondering about 1corth 13:1-8 so that the grace to do the word would be released into our lives (Mk 4:24 amp)
I leave you with these thought provoking words in 1Jhn 4:7-8 (amp)- Beloved, let us love one another, for love is (springs) from God; and he who loves his fellowmen is begotten (born) of God and is coming progressively to know and understand God to perceive and recognize and get a better and clearer knowledge of Him.He who does not love, has not become acquainted with God does not and never did know Him, for God is love.

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