“Love never stops being patient, never stops believing, never stops hoping, never gives up” (1 Corinthians 13:7 GW).
Loving others in this way will transform your relationships!
The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13:7, “Love never stops being patient, never stops believing, never stops hoping, never gives up” (GW).
This is how God loves you. God never stops being patient with you. God never stops believing in you. God never stops hoping for the best in your life. God never gives up on you. That’s what God expects you to do with everybody else.
“Love never stops being patient.” That means love extends grace. You can offer grace to others.
“Love never stops believing.” That means it expresses faith. You tell someone, “Even though we’re having a tough time, I will never stop believing in you.”
“Love never stops hoping.” That means love expects the best. Are you expecting the best in your marriage, or have you settled for less than the best?
“Love never gives up.” That means love endures the worst. It means you can look at the other person and say, “You can throw everything at me, but I’m going to keep loving you, no matter what.”
If you want to start transforming your relationships today, I invite you to say this prayer to God: “Dear God, I admit that I have made a mess in my relationships. They’re complicated and broken, and I’ve often settled for less than the best. They need a transformation! I want you to begin by changing me. Deliver me from my fears, because I can see how they make me distant and defensive and even demanding. Today and every day from now on, I want to surrender my heart to you. I want to learn to live my life in your love and be filled with your love.
“Help me to accept others, just as you’ve accepted me. Help me to love others unconditionally, just as you have loved me. Help me to forgive others totally, just as you’ve forgiven me. And help me to value others as much as you value me. Help me to extend grace to and express faith in the people around me. Help me to expect the best in others, and when the worst happens, help me to endure it. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
Express Faith With Your Goals
In order to fulfill your destiny you must make a faith commitment. It’s not enough to just talk about your calling and set some goals. You need to decide to go for it, to say “I’m going to do this.”
Esther knew going to the king was risky and it could lead to her death. She was afraid to go, but she knew it was the right thing to do. And she said, “If I perish, I perish.” That’s a faith commitment.
Until you know what you are willing to die for, you are not ready to live. You are just existing.
But when you understand your destiny and you know what God has called you to do, you’re willing to go for it. You’re willing to abandon everything.
Knowing what God has called you to do and making the faith commitment to do it means setting goals. The best way I can put it is this: You can only manage what you measure.
This is an important principle of life. If you don’t have specific goals that can be measured, your goal will just be a pipe dream. You won’t be any better, you won’t be any different than you are today.
And above all else, make sure you set your goals with faith. Why? Because Jesus said, ” Because of your faith, it will happen.” (Matthew 9:29 NLT)
Plant Today, Then Be Patient for the Harvest
The time to start planting is now.
I talk to people all the time who say, “One of these days, I’m going to …” They’re going to serve more one of these days. Or when they retire. Or when they get a raise. They’re going to increase their giving one of these days.
“One of these days” is none of these days. You don’t wait for things to get better; you start planting now. Why? Because the sooner you plant, the longer you’re going to enjoy the harvest in your life.
But the harvest is not always going to come in your time. There’s always a delay between sowing and reaping. You plant in one season, and you harvest in another.
You have to be patient and not give up!
This is one of the principles that the Kingdom of God operates on. Mark 4:26-29 says, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed spouts and grows, though he does not know how. All by itself the soil produces grain — first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head” (NIV).
The results will come, but they will come slowly and as part of a process. And because it takes time, “Let us not become tired of doing good; for if we do not give up, the time will come when we will reap the harvest” (Galatians 6:9 GNT).
Some of you have got to forget about last year’s crop failure. Instead, start focusing on the long-term harvest in your life. You didn’t get the way you are financially overnight. You took years to mess things up, and it’s going to take a while to put things back together. There is a time of delay between sowing and reaping.
The Bible says in Psalm 126:5-6, “Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest” (NLT).
What need have you been grieving over? Maybe you’ve lost your job. Maybe you’ve lost your health. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one. Maybe you’ve lost your savings. Maybe you’ve lost half of your retirement in the last few years. Maybe you’ve lost your dream.
Mourning is ok; moaning is not. Instead of moaning, you need to plant a seed, because whatever you need more of you need to give away.