Bless you this auspicious day! I hope you are found loving God and seeking Him. If not, well, think about it. It’s a great way to be found…
Love…does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;
1 Corinthians 13:5
I think it’s important you know at this juncture I am a work in progress. I have many failings. Many. But God shows stuff to me anyway. I guess it goes without saying that we all have the potential to do amazing things for God even if we are in a tough place. I say all this to let you know that though I am teaching and writing about love, I am not the perfect lover. Jesus is the only one who ever taught from the place of “fully versed.”
So, Love does not:
- Behave rudely
- Seek it’s own
- Become provoked
- Think evil
We’re going to focus on rudeness and work our way along the others as we can.
Rude behavior in this life is, unfortunately, common place. Nearly everywhere we go, we find rude people. There are many causes for this and quite often, it is displayed without purpose or even knowledge. Someone cuts you off in traffic, steps in the line ahead of you at the grocery store, takes your parking space you were waiting for. Rudeness can happen at work, in the park or even in church.
Yes, even in church. Although it is the one place you would think could move along in life without rudeness, the church does indeed, suffer from this painful malady. And, in this world, it is also the one place that rudeness should never be found. In the church, rudeness damages the Kingdom of God the most. No one comes to church very long if they find rudeness in the “Saints.” As a Christian, you will answer for the way you treat others.
We define rudeness as someone doing something to us because of their “could care less” attitude. They are not necessarily out to do us harm or be mean, they just simply do not care enough to take the time to realize we are there and are also important. This is a clear lack of love according to this passage. It is NOT something love displays. But, how do we respond?
The toughest lover was Jesus. He showed love until the end. And towards people that were doing far more hurt to him that being rude. I believe love via relationship can do more to impede rudeness than anything else. Maybe engage?
When you engage someone over a rude actions they have committed, you are likely in for a fight. Which is more a confrontation than connection. But maybe if you engage that person to know them. To love them? After all, we cannot combat evil with evil and expect to win, can we?
I don’t believe Paul was trying to just point out the short comings of a life that lacks love as much as he was trying to teach us that love is substance that we need to take in daily. As we do, we are able to give it out. Lessons in love teach us what not to do, but they also teach what to look for in others. We aren’t meant to recognize it so that we can point to that person and say, “You are rude. You have no love.” We are meant, I believe, to see it and do something about it. What? Well, that’s where your relationship with Jesus comes into play. He has that answer and every case will be different. Yeah, becoming a Christian was the easy part. “Being” a Christian can be really tough. The reward, of course, being worth it.
Working on my rudeness…