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. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a NIV)
So many of us heard these words at our wedding, many have it written in their wedding invitations. Some might even read them in Sunday school. I think that few actually come close to living it out. I'm guilty of it. Is it going to get a little "religious," a little "churchy" for some? It is the Bible, but frankly even people who've been in church only for their wedding have heard it. So hang around, it's going to be revealing.
The good King James Version (KJV) translates these verses differently than many of the modern translations.
It refers not to "Love" but to charity. I'm sure there is a whole lesson here about Love being like the United Way, but I'm not going there. It refers not to "patience" but to "long suffering." This means that Love ain't like waiting for the crosstown bus, a relief pitcher, or Christmas to come.
The state of Louisiana waited patiently for a Super Bowl victory while hosting countless (ok, it was 9, I counted) of them. Given that the entire team is probably going to be suspended after Bounty-Gate, (a toilet paper joke is there, but I refuse to stoop for it) I fear they are going to wait again.
So what is patience? The wikipedia dictionary defines it as the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.
That doesn't sound like waiting for Christmas to me.
What if patience was an Olympic sport? I'm guessing that Marathoners and dare I say those who wait upon their entry into the stadium would be hugely competitive. At some point we've shelved patience for immediate gratification. Everything is so instantaneous that we can't tolerate the smallest delay.
So what does that look like in real life? I would say that children require a lot of patience. Employment of any kind often requires a good bit of patience. They can't compare to the biggest trial of patience ever...
So what does patience in marriage look like? Could it be 15-20 years of waiting for your spouse to become less of a selfish jerk? How many of those years are spent with friends telling you to leave that jerk? Society says just get a divorce because it is easy and that's what they're there for...(divorces, not friends)
Impatience whispers in your ear "get out now before there are kids" or "get out before the kids are old enough to resent you" or "eat the marshmallow" wait...what? There was a study a long time ago where 4 year olds were given a marshmallow and told they could eat it or wait 15 minutes to get another. About a third of the kids waited and when interviewed later in life at 18, were more confident and socially adept.
I'm not sure that patience is made up entirely of years. I believe that circumstances are also important. Waiting 10 years to go to Disneyworld is not as patient as waiting for a loved one to come home from being deployed for a year in a war zone.
I want to be a long sufferer!
I suck at Patience. I give myself a 6 out of 10. I can't wait to finish this post.
Mrs Mynd is a black belt in the art of patience.
How about you?
What are you waiting for?
Get out there and be patient with someone!
Here is the list, I hope to cover them all in my blog.
Be patient, I will get to them at some point.
It doesn't say Love does not Procrastinate!
Love is Kind
Love does not Envy
Love does not Boast
Love is not Proud
Love does not Dishonor
Love is not Self-Seeking
Love is not easily Angered
Love Keeps No Record of Wrongs
Love doesn't Delight in Evil, but Rejoices in Truth
Love Always Protects
Love Always Trusts
Love Always Hopes
Love Always Perseveres
Love Never Fails