It is Valentine’s Day, beloved, and many of us are reflecting on the love we have for our friends, loved ones, and romantic partners, simply because LOVE is sweet. But what does pure love look like in reality?
Listen, I am not referring to the commercialization of illicit sex that has now been associated with such a Christian festival of love between divinely ordained marriages.
In today’s devotional, we’ll be looking at 1 Corinthians 13:4–8, which provides us with a lovely definition of love. This verse teaches us that love is compassionate, patient, modest, and selfless, and it never gives up.
» Tuesday, 14th February 2023 | I Stand In The Gap Daily Devotional | Love That Never Fails: The Spirit of Valentine’s Day
Yesterday’s daily devotional was on “Overcoming Hate and Living in Love” and today’s is “Love That Never Fails: The Spirit of Valentine’s Day”.
Anchor verse of the day
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (NKJV)
Our anchor passage of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 gives us a beautiful definition of what love truly is, and it inspires us to demonstrate this love in our interactions with other people.
This scripture says that love is defined by traits like kindness, patience, humility, selflessness, and a refusal to remember wrongs. Love also celebrates the truth and endures all adversity.
It is a reminder that love is a choice to treat people with compassion, respect, and selflessness rather than just as an emotion or sensation. We can experience the fullness of God’s love in our lives and share His love with others via our interactions with them if we choose to love others in this way.
Themes in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
- Patience: Love is patient means willing to wait and put up with difficult people or circumstances.
- Kindness: Love is kind means being gentle, compassionate, and considerate towards others.
- Humility: Being humble means no envy, boasting, or pride. True love does not seek to exalt itself or put itself above others.
- Selflessness: Love is not self-seeking but comes naturally, and does not seek to further its own interests.
- Forgiveness: Love does not keep a record of wrongs, thereby being willing to forgive and move on from past hurt or offenses.
- Truth: Love does rejoice in truth and does not delight in evil.
- Perseverance: Love always protects, trusts, hopes, and perseveres.
Background to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
It was written by the apostle Paul to the Corinthian church during a period of conflict, immorality, and lawsuits among the congregation’s members.
Paul emphasizes the value of love in the life of a Christian while defining and describing love. Despite having the highest spiritual abilities, such as prophecy, knowledge, or faith, he says that without love, a person is nothing. He continues by outlining the qualities of love that were mentioned in an earlier response.
This passage is intended to convey the idea that a Christian’s life is centered around love. Everything we do and everything we are ought to revolve around it. We can grow closer to Jesus and show others his love by emphasizing and growing love in our hearts and lives. For many decades, and even today, this scripture has served as a source of inspiration and consolation for Christians.
Similar verses to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV)
The characteristics that believers who are filled with the Holy Spirit should exhibit are listed in this verse. The first characteristic listed is love, which is said to be a feature that should define every Christian’s life.
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.John 13:34-35 (NKJV)
In this passage, Jesus explicitly tells His followers to love one another. The importance of love as a sign of a follower of Jesus is stressed in this passage.
Valentine on the 14th of February?
The origins of Valentine’s Day can be traced back to the Roman Empire. During a time when it was against the law, Saint Valentine of Rome was imprisoned for secretly officiating marriages for Christian couples.
The custom of giving love letters and gifts on Valentine’s Day is said to have started when Saint Valentine left tiny gifts and notes of affection for the couples he had married. The occasion eventually turned into a celebration of romantic love and affection, during which time lovers would send one another cards, flowers, and other presents as a sign of their devotion.
Valentine’s Day is now widely observed worldwide, and it serves as a day for lovers to show their affection for one another. It is also a day to honor all kinds of love, including the affection shared by family, friends, and even pets.
Valentine’s Day continues to be a significant chance to express love and gratitude to people who are closest to us, whether it be through gift-exchanging, sending love messages, or just spending quality time with loved ones.
Reflection on the love that never fails: the spirit of Valentine’s day
True love is beautifully described in 1 Corinthians 13:4–8, which makes it an appropriate passage to use in relation to Valentine’s Day celebrations. This verse clearly defines what it means to love as Jesus loved, which is something that Christians are supposed to do.
Some of the qualities of love mentioned in this verse, such as kindness, patience, and forgiving others’ wrongdoings, are crucial for any healthy relationship, including romantic ones. Christians might consider these verses on February 14 and consider how they can show their partner love in these ways.
Furthermore, the message of this passage applies to all relationships, including those with family, friends, and even complete strangers. It is not just about romantic connections. Christians might reflect on how they can show love to others on Valentine’s Day and try to embody the virtues of love mentioned in this scripture in all of their interactions.
In a nutshell:
There should be a direct Focus on love: Love should be the center and guiding principle of a Christian’s life. Believers should strive to put love at the forefront of their thoughts, actions, and decisions.
Let us pray for the love that never fails
Our Heavenly Father,
With thankful hearts, we seek your direction and wisdom as we consider the subject of love this Valentine’s Day. We beg you to assist us in demonstrating your unwavering, faultless love in our daily lives.
We pray for your assistance in helping us to put our attention on love, to be kind and patient, to seek understanding, to live sacrificially, and uplift people around us.
May we always make an effort to exemplify the Valentine’s Day spirit, showing our affection for those around us and making their lives happier.
We ask that your love would radiate through us as a light of hope to everyone we come in contact with, that it would be obvious in all we do.
In the mighty name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, we make this request.