Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 Cor. 13:4-7
Hopefully you’ve been thinking over the last month or so about the significant challenges but immeasurable benefits of spending time cultivating the fruit of love in our lives.
Indeed, I’ve gone as far as to say that love is the “superfruit” that feeds itself into all the other fruits of the spirit.
Are you still wondering what practical steps you can take to nurture the love fruit of the spirit?
Begin with realizing that it’s not like a recipe or a formula that works the same way all of the time for every person.
However, the closest thing I can find to an owner’s manual for life is the book of Proverbs. An often-recommended daily devotional is simply to see the date on the calendar and read the Proverb for that day. That takes you through almost every Proverb almost every month. When people are new to bible reading, I’ve recommended this as a starting point because it’s as if you are getting specific instructions and “tips” each day. Note the presence of the word “verb” in Proverbs! We know verbs requires action! So you are actually given things to do to get you closer to your goal of living in a way that pleases God.
A theme that runs through the book of Proverbs is wisdom! More than anything else, Solomon, the author of Proverbs, wanted wisdom. It was given to him and he passed it along.
To love more, start pursuing the things God loves.
God loves to instill wisdom in His followers, and rewards the person who runs after wisdom.
He promises this.
“I love them that love me and those that seem me early shall find me.” Proverbs 8:17.
This verse seems to imply to me that we should try and seek God’s wisdom early in our day before the world can barge in. Even if I am rushed in the morning, I can usually read a Proverb on my phone or laptop and know I have gotten some strength for the day. The verse also speaks to the importance of pointing children to God early in their lives. One way we demonstrate love to our children is to teach them about Jesus.
We are later told in Proverbs 8 that those that love God’s wisdom “will inherit substance” and they shall have their fill of treasure (Proverbs 8: 21). This may not mean we become wealthy in material goods and money, but it does promise spiritual abundance and eternal rewards.
If we are continually focusing our attention on the mundane details of our daily lives, we miss out on the “big picture” of where it all fits within God’s framework.
The more wisdom you obtain from God, the more you will want and once you’ve established this cycle in your life, the fruit of love cannot help but flourish and flow into your activities and interactions each day.
All the Best in 2013!