Saturday, June 27, 2015

June 28, 2015

"Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, does not boast, it is not proud." I Corinthians 13:4

Would you rather have a porcupine or a puppy for a pet?

Have you ever tried to cuddle a porcupine? Well, don't!

However, cuddling a puppy has been proven to be good for your emotional and mental health!

You may be thinking, "Brad, what are you talking about? How do you get porcupines and puppies out of this verse?"

"Love is patient, love is kind" means that God's love gives you the ability to take grief from someone and give them grace in return. That sounds like a puppy to me! No matter how mean you are to your dog it will always come back ready to lick your face.

Not so with porcupines. They can't even cuddle with each other because of their sharp quills that cause pain to whomever they get close to. 

That reminds me of jealousy, boasting and arrogance. Those attitudes manifested in your life make it hard for you to get close to other people without hurting them.  Others will find it hard to get close to you as well.

Love is patience and kindness.

Love is not jealousy, boasting or arrogance.

Patience is not jealousy, boasting or arrogance.

Kindness is not jealousy, boasting or arrogance.

So, if love is the "more excellent way" and you don't have it that's a problem!

Some of the problems created by jealousy, boasting and arrogance are:

- Comparing yourself to others always putting yourself in a more favorable light
- Competing with others to make you look better and others look worse
- Conspiring to undermine the success of others so you appear more successful
- Controlling situations and trying to control others so you will feel like you're in charge

None of those individually will make you more cuddly. Each will tend to push others away. All of them or any combination of them turn you into a full-fledged porcupine!

What should you do? How do you become a puppy and not a porcupine?

- Realize - you need God love and you haven't received it.           
- Repent - tell God you are tired of your jealousy, boasting and pride
- Receive - empty yourself and receive the fullness of His love by faith
- Readjust - live differently in the power of His Spirit and begin to love:

When tempted to compare I will compliment instead!

When tempted to compete I will celebrate instead!

When tempted to conspire I will contribute instead!

When tempted to control I will commit it to God instead!

If it were only that easy for real porcupines!