Dear friends, we must love each other because love comes from God. ~ 1 John 4:7
God loves you. God loves you when you’re being naughty and when you’re being helpful. He loves the meanie who picks on others, and he loves the ragged old woman who begs for money on the corner. God is love! (1 John 4:16)
First Corinthians 13 is known as “The Love Chapter” in the Bible. It doesn’t talk about Valentine’s Day or candy hearts or flowers. It tells us about God’s love and the kind of love he wants us to have. God’s love makes us patient and kind. His love likes the truth better than a lie. God’s love is hopeful and helpful and trusting.
The “Love Chapter” also tells us what love is NOT like. Real love isn’t jealous or rude, and it doesn’t say, “Look at me! I’m pretty great!” Love isn’t selfish, and it doesn’t keep a long list of the bad things that other people do.
Love isn’t always easy, is it? It’s even hard for grownups—like parents or teachers or coaches. If someone is reading this with you, take a few minutes to talk about this. Are you always patient with your family or neighbors? When have you been rude or selfish?
We don’t always love with God’s kind of love, but Chapter 13 has some good news for us. While we’re young, we think and figure things out like a child. That makes sense, right? But no one wants to be a child forever. It goes on to say that as we grow up, we will outgrow our baby ways. Our body, mind, and heart will grow and change.
Getting bigger and stronger and smarter doesn’t mean you’ll do everything right. Because God is love, He’s the only one who can show you how to love others. Ask Him to live in your heart and make you the kind of person He wants you to be. Just like you start looking more like mom or dad as you get older, when God lives in you, you grow to be more like Him.
If you ever notice that you’re not being very kind or loving, take a moment and ask God to help you. You can quietly say a prayer as simple as, “God, I don’t like that person very much right now. Help me love like You love. Thank you.” Because God loves us, we can love others.