during our high school graduation ceremony, i was assigned to read Corinthians 13:4-13. i distinctly remember how our school principal, Sr. Merced Sanchez, had taken me aside and instructed me to read it slow, with feeling, to match the solemnity of the occasion.
“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. Love never fails…”
that was how i first got acquainted with St. Paul’s clear and practical illustration of how we are to love. i was seventeen then. although i was to hear the same verses over and over in wedding masses in the decades that followed, it is only today that i realize what the scripture truly depicts.
“it is actually the love of God expressing itself. that love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit and it is that love in me that effectively works through me and comes in contact with everyone I meet.” — My Utmost For His Highest
well, it doesn’t take me long to realize also how i keep falling short in allowing that brand of love to supersede my natural, human way of loving. often being more jealous, suspicious, impatient, proud, envious, irritable, rash, anxious, etc. instead of being more patient, kind, slow to anger, long-suffering, constant, tender, forgiving, trusting, etc. — the way God truly loves.
yet, “i remain faithful to His name, even though the commonsense view of my life may seemingly deny that, and may appear to be declaring that He has no more power than the morning mist.”
“my Lord, forgive me. thank You for propping me up and reminding me never to lose hope. i rest confident in Your love. i look forward to the day when, by the power and grace of the Holy Spirit, i will be totally transformed — exhibiting and demonstrating Your love awaiting inside me. i pray for those i love that they, too, may grow in Your love. i love You, Jesus.”