let love bloom 1 Cor 13

Any of you who have been to a wedding ceremony  may have heard sections of 1 Corinthians 13 recited and shared.  Many of you have heard it declared from the pulpit and read it in your time of devotion.  I wonder, though, how many of us really take it to heart, you know the call to love others. It is the 2nd commandment which our Lord reminded us to follow and obey.

  1. Love the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind
  2.  Love your neighbor as yourself. 

This concept of Christ-like loving has been a burden on my heart and, perhaps, a book waiting to be written for many years now.  My hands are itching to inscribe testimony after testimony of the touch of God upon the broken by the faithful who follow that precious reminder, to be like the Savior; to be sacrificial in love; to be wholly devoted to living and loving like Christ. I have written this post multiple times tonight as I am finding my heart is a bit more tender than I thought, and even still I am not sure I can fully convey what is pressing within.

I am seeing this verse in a whole new light and it leaves me with some questions about community, loving God fully, and loving others out of that abundance.

Let’s look at the Word together.  1 Corinthians 13:1-8

If I can speak in the tongues of men and even of angels, but have not love, I am only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all the secret powers and truths and mysteries and posses all knowledge, and if I have faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

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,  I gain nothing.

Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, it’s not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.

It is not conceited and does not act unbecomingly. Love does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it.

It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.

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 circumstance, an it endures everything.

Love never fails.



My heart literally breaks as I consider the fact that in our fast paced, very self-focused lives; the most significant relationships are not essentially within the church. And it simply should not be that way. We should be sowing into others who need to know the gift of grace but we should be iron sharpens iron to those who are walking along the same road of faith.

What I have found when I share Truth, however, is that people have already heard it but they have seldom seen it displayed.{Why?}


Why is it so easy to break down the walls carefully laid by consistency and prayer, with hands belonging to those who are proclaiming their lives are sold out to God? Simply because we all need more and more of Jesus every day and none of us are exempt from sin’s stronghold on life, though we have been redeemed from it. Sanctification is a work that is continually refining us.

I have been challenging myself to be intentionally loving and purposely prayerful when it comes to the divisions I see so rooted within the hearts and minds of those of us who profess Christ with our mouths yet harbor something else in our hearts.

And I wonder, are we so uncertain that God is fully in control that we have to take it upon ourselves to make the Word literally ineffectual because we fail to follow the rules of loving above?


I look at this set of scriptures and can probably list out daily the many times I have trespassed them with my heart and with my mouth. If that is true, then why would I provoke others towards inconsistency by pointing out faults and areas of contention that I find concerning? I am not sure that is our place, and to be honest, it is not something I want to do.

My heart breaks as I think of how we often hurt one another so easily, and if mine is breaking, faulty as it is, how much more the Lord’s heart must break?


I have asked these questions when contemplating the solution to this issue, though it is purely rhetorical most of the time.  Yet as I mentioned, I want to challenge us to get to the heart of our inadequacies and unresolved hurt, especially in the church.  If perhaps you are stuck here, too, then maybe you can ponder these with me.

  • What is it that holds us back from loving freely?
  • What has been one thing that has kept us from experiencing God’s love fully?
  • What can we change in our lives to see the fullness of His heart displayed within our own?

Friends, it isn’t fitting that the body that bears the seal of the risen Lord  offer anything but grace, love, and mercy to the dying, broken and the needy, especially those who resting in the fold of grace with us.  

It has been my experience that unswerving devotion is not a problem for those who don’t know Christ, neither is kindness, and grace and compassion.  If that is true, then why, oh why, do we find it so easy to pull one another apart till we are exposed and bare, feeling unloved and broken?

If we go to 1 Corinthians 13:9-12 we may see the light shine a little more:

For  our knowledge is fragmentary ( imperfect) and prophecy is fragmentary (incomplete)

But when that which is complete and perfect comes, the incomplete and perfect will vanish away.

When I was a child …  I reasoned like a child; now that I am a man, I am done with childish things.

For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim (blurred) reflection [of reality as in a riddle or enigma], but when perfection comes when shall see in reality and face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly, even in the same manner as I have been fully and clearly known and understood by God.


Verse 13, probably the most known of the above chapter goes on to say that faith, hope and love abide, but the greatest of the three is the true affection that grows out of God’s love for us towards God and towards man … LOVE.


  • Where is that love when we point fingers and break hearts?
  • Where is that love when we pass judgment and hold bitterness?
  • Where is that love when we don’t accept or forgive?
  • Where is that love when we diminish hurts by declarations of truth?
  • Where is that love when the hope is gone and faith has fallen?


It is somewhat easy to love the sinner because we feel a lofty calling to share the gospel, and we think we know a better way. Yet, that soul we are trying to speak into is watching the church tear one another apart as we willingly divide and destruct the means by which we can build and restore.  Why would they then choose to follow us when they have that clearly before them in the world?


I was asked a question by someone dear to me, once,  that rocked me to my core.  I have never forgotten. Regardless of circumstances, relationship, or the nature of our conversation there 5 key words that still reverberate in my mind.

{Do you still love me?}

You see, I live my life in a way that people know I choose to follow Christ.(or at least I hope I do)  I don’t have to preach it. In fact, I don’t have to say a word.  People don’t need to hear my declaration of righteousness; they need to hear the definition of grace and mercy. They need to know that they are loved.


My heart has been burdened for so long at the continual breaking down of the Body of Christ from within. Satan doesn’t have to attack believers when we are doing quite a good job doing it ourselves.

We are called to peace, righteousness, joy, temperance, long-suffering, mercy, encouragement, and love not the divisive separating that occurs so easily within our midst. I challenge you to toe the line and bear those good fruits that Galatians 5:22-23 demands are evidence of a spirit-filled life.

Romans 5:5 says, “And hope makes us not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which has been given to us.”

If you go up to the 1st verse in Romans 5 it reminds us that we are only justified by faith (not works, rules, attitudes, associations, etc.) and we have peace only in Christ.

And if you go to Romans 8, (love this chapter that sets us free from the guilt monster), all the way to the end to verses 37-39 we see a few key promises. Because of his love in verse 37 we can have full assurance to the point of persuasion that nothing can separate us from His love.

{If that is the case, friends, why are we trying to place a wedge in the very heart of the Holy by putting our feet against the door which is open to all especially within the Body?}


I am issuing a challenge, friends, to for me and for you… can we keep one another accountable and real?

Are we serving and loving as we ought ?

Or are we willfully separating others from the love of God?


And for those of you who have felt the sting of pain from the tongues of those who have been extended grace, I pray that you will know His grace, peace and love. I pray that in all things you will be enriched by His heart. I pray that you will lack no good thing, especially encouragement, and that you would be found blameless before God as you rest in His ability to deliver and defend, heal and restore, bless and secure all things in the beauty of His timely providence. He is faithful.


This may seem like a tangent or a rant, but as I was thinking of the reason I write here at, Journeys in Grace, I realized it is because I want to share Truth with others.  Sometimes, it may not be the flowery words that spill forth, like today, yet I just couldn’t help but offer a  challenge to consider the way we are deflecting the very purposes of our serving by causing pain to the ones who are engrafted in to the same vine we are privileged to find our connection.

I am praying for each of you who are journeying to grace with me today. I am thankful  for you. Please share a prayer request, burden, challenge, or testimony.  I love to hear from you.



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Linking up with like-minded sisters tonight
Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood

Make a Difference  Mondays