Day 26 – Cardio Training

So far in our discussion on getting encouraging we looked at 1 Corinthians 13:4 and talked about love being patient. We also talked about living as adjectives in His story instead of trying to live as nouns. He is the noun, and we were created to be adjectives. Then we look at 1 Corinthians 13:5 and talk about love being kind. Today we are going to continue on and look at 1 Corinthians 6-8 and how these verses point us to the source that makes living a life of love possible, they help us to get our eyes on Jesus.

Scripture Reading

Proverbs 3:5-7 (MSG)
5 Trust GOD from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. 6 Listen for GOD’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track. 7 Don’t assume that you know it all. Run to GOD! Run from evil!

Just like verses 4 and 5 fit together in our earlier discussions, so do verses 6 through 8.

1 Corinthians 13:6-8a (NIV)
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails.

1. Love rejoices with the truth

Love doesn’t delight in evil it rejoices with the truth. Evil is that which is opposed to God and His purposes. It is harmful and non-productive. It is choosing not to do the next right thing. It is always a choice presented to us. When we move off course, when we give into temptation, we are delighting in evil. Our heart, our motivation for doing the next right thing comes from rejoicing with the truth. For us the truth is more than an ideal, it is actually personified in Christ.

John 1:17 (NIV)
17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

John 14:6 (NIV)
6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

It is only possible to even hope to love this way by getting our eyes focused on Him and trying to live by doing the next right thing. With Jesus as our center of our lives we can begin to experience the love expressed in verses 7 and 8.

2. Love never fails

How does love never fail? Paul again helps to define this amazing love, this time by telling us what love does.

1 Corinthians 13:7 (NIV)
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

This type of unfailing love is expressed to us by the Lord. As we can begin to recognize and experience this love for us by Him, we can then begin to love others in this way. Let’s look at how He loves us.

a. It always protects

2 Thessalonians 3:3 (NIV)
3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.

The Lord protects us from the evil one. He is protective over you. He doesn’t want you to be harmed by the evil one. He is always there with us and for us. As we have discussed when temptation comes, He always makes a way out for us if we choose it. Remember the temptation prayer I taught you? HELP.

b. It always trusts

Proverbs 3:5 (NIV)
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;

As the reality of living in the truth takes hold in our lives, we should begin to comprehend that He is way better at taking care of us than we are. We need to learn that we can trust Him. He is not some big giant meanie in the sky who is just waiting for you to mess up so He can squash you. He wants you to be blessed, to prosper. When we do mess up, we just need to go running to Him, asking Him to forgive us and He does. We need to respond to this love by doing things His way, by following the book instead of the culture. If your understanding and His understanding are different, you need to trust Him and do it His way.

c. It always hopes

Hope and trust are linked together. Hope is a trustful expectation, particularly when it comes to the fulfilling of God’s promises.
Worldly hope is a based on a feeling that what is wanted will happen. Biblical hope is more than a feeling. Biblical hope is the confidence that what God has done for us in the past guarantees our participation in what God will do in the future.

Hebrews 10:23 (NIV)
23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

As we understand that God’s love for us protects us, that it allows us to trust and hope in Him, the result is that we can persevere in this life of love regardless of the situations in life we experience. In Him, there is always a bigger picture. There is always more to life if we can get a glimpse of it from the throne room of God instead of always looking from our own limited perspective.

d. It always perseveres

Hebrews 12:1-3 (NIV)
1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

We fix our eyes on Jesus, knowing this amazing unfailing love He has for us, realizing all that he went through so that we can experience this love and then we choose to rejoice in the truth by trying to do the next right thing instead of delighting in evil by not doing the next right thing.

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