Love has a tender side but it also has a tough side.
As a parent, you have a tender love for your child(ren) but occasionally they will place themselves on the tough side of your love and face your discipline.
Part of the reason that is true is found in this characteristic of love. The word picture painted by the original language is a military term that signifies a soldier "holding his ground" under attack from the enemy.
So, the idea expressed in "love always perseveres" is that love stakes out a position and holds that ground. When it comes to faith and following Christ stake yourself to the position of His righteousness. Everyone who shares that position will find love tender but those who oppose the position will find love tough and unyielding.
God enjoyed many tender moments with Adam and Eve as they walked together in the Paradise call Eden. We can only try to imagine how amazing that must have been to walk and talk with God.
But when Adam and Eve rebelled against God they put themselves on the tough side of God's love. His holiness and righteousness "held its ground" while they moved to unrighteousness and sin.
The amazing thing about God is even when He showed Adam and Eve His tough love by removing them from the Garden, He did it as an act of mercy to protect them from access to the Tree of Life.
Because of the First Adam's sin, mankind was moved away from the tender side of God's love to the tough side of His love.
So, because of God's tender love for you and for me He chose to send His Son to be the Second Adam. Born of a virgin and conceived by the Holy Spirit, Jesus, the sinless Son of God put Himself on the tough side of God's love when He took your sins and my sins upon Himself on the cross. He bore the wrath of a Holy God so you and I can once again experience the tender side of God's love.
God is calling you to His tender love. He wants you to know the joy of being on the tender side of His love and enduring there.
Love has a tender love and a tough side.
Have you chosen sides?