“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
Love is the first fruit we find, which speaks of it’s great importance. Coupled with Jesus’ commandments in Matthew 22, and other love passages like Romans 8:35-39, 1 Corinthians 13 and 1 John 4:8; we see that love in the life of a Christian is key.
What does the word “love” truly mean?
The definition of love is…..to be pleased with; to regard with affection
As a help meet and/or a mother how can we best exhibit love in our homes, to our husbands and children?
In order to answer this question, we must break down what it is, and follow God’s word for direction.
1. Love is a choice.
Recognize ~ We must accept that we must choose to love daily, sometimes choosing to several times a day.
Apply ~ We daily choose to continue loving our husband and our children. We will not always be pleased with them, thus daily we choose to love them.
2. It is sacrificial.
Recognize ~ God’s love for us sent His Son as a sacrifice, Christ’s love sacrificed Himself in obedience to His Father.
Apply ~ Daily we choose to put our husband’s and children’s needs and wants above our own.
3. Love is patient.
Recognize ~ Throughout God’s word we see His patience with those that have gone on before us, and in our own lives we know the depth of His patience.
Apply ~ Daily our children will test us, and we must stand strong. We are pointing them towards God who is full of patience. A midst the difficult times, we must cry out to Him for strength as our children learn from what they see.
4. It is kind.
Recognize ~ God extends Himself over and over again through His word. His love for us is the very picture of perfect kindness.
Apply ~ Daily our words and the tones we use must be full of kindness, our actions must exhibit a loving care for our husbands and children.
5. Love does not envy.
Recognize ~ God is a jealous God, full of righteous jealousy. He alone is able to be 100% righteously jealous.
Apply ~ Daily we must be thankful for all that God has blessed us with. Thankful for exactly the way things are, for God’s ways are not ours, His thoughts and plans for us and our future are not seen yet.
6. It is not provoked, thinks no evil.
Recognize ~ God’s actions are always to draw people to Him, His thoughts toward us are full of hope.
Apply ~ Daily we must choose to think positively, to ask God to show us what we are to teach (or learn) when we find ourselves frustrated.
7. Love bears and endures all things.
Recognize ~ God puts up with everything we throw at Him, yes there will most likely be consequences, but we aren’t crossed off the “saved list” for our bad choices or behavior.
Apply ~ Daily we must choose to love throughout all that comes our way. Everything. Our love must remain steadfast, for it is a picture of God’s love to our children. God is our Father and loves us unconditionally, we’re their parent and our love must be liken to His. (Unconditional love does not equal no consequences for bad behavior, disobedience, etc.)
8. It believes and hopes all things.
Recognize ~ Through God’s work in us He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think!
Apply ~ Daily we must choose to believe and hope for all God is doing in us, our husbands and our children.
9. Love never fails.
Recognize ~ God will never leave us nor forsake us, for God is love, which never fails.
Apply ~ Daily we must choose to keep at it, to get back up, and love unconditionally.
Cultivating love in ourselves, requires lessons from Love itself, God the Father.
While His love is perfect, and ours never will be, His love is portrayed throughout Scripture. With the best daily instruction (in my opinion) being found in 1 Corinthians 13.