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love is a four-letter word
“Love is patient; love is kind.” —1 Corinthians 13:4
God is love (1 Jn 4:16). Without love, we gain nothing (1 Cor 13:3). They’ll know we are Christians by our love (Jn 13:35). Love is the essence of the Christian life. Love is an action more than a quality or condition. One translation of 1 Corinthians 13 is: “Love does patient things. Love does the kind thing,” etc. Love is not modified by an adjective but expressed by a verb. Furthermore, love does three things and does not do eight things. First, love does patient and kind things. A more exact translation would be: “Love suffers for a long time and removes others’ burdens.”
Love here is not so much feeling good but suffering. It is not self-centered but other-centered. The theme of selflessness is further expressed in the eight things that love does not do (1 Cor 13:4-6). The climax of the passage is: “Love rejoices in the truth.” Love is not here related to feelings or sex but to joy and truth. When God speaks of love, He means something much different than we mean. Let us learn of love from God Who is Love (1 Jn 4:16).
Prayer: Jesus, give me divine love, unconditional love, Your love.
Promise: “God’s wisdom is vindicated by all who accept it.” —Lk 7:35
Praise: In the Third Century, Catholicism flourished in Northern Africa. St. Cyprian was Bishop of Carthage and administered his office with compassion. Not free from detractors, he was martyred in 258 AD.
Reference: (For a related teaching on Love, order, listen to, or download our CD 58-1 or DVD 58 on our website.)
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