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A Prayer for Honest Love
By Lysa Terkeurst
“It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” 1 Corinthians 13:7-8a (NIV)
Today I’m feeling so challenged to look at love a little differently. Sometimes in the gut-honest quietness of my heart, I look at love through the eyes of what it will offer me.
I hold out the little cup of my heart to the people I love, “Will you fill my empty spaces? Today will you do that one really thoughtful thing and make me feel like I’m the most noticed and special woman in the world?”
Then I hold it out to my children, “Will you fill up my empty spaces? Will you do something today that makes me look really good as a mom so I’ll feel a little more validated?”
Then I hold it out to my ministry, “Will you fill up my empty spaces? Will you provide something today that makes me feel more significant?”
Love is a tricky thing. Our hearts were created to crave it. God proclaims that love is greater than hope and greater than faith.
God also proclaims that love never fails. And in the quietness of my heart that verse from 1 Corinthians 13 makes me squirm a bit. I see love failing all the time. Or do I?
If my only view of love is what it will give me, love from others will fail me every time. It’s not that love fails. It’s that other people were never meant to be my God. Even a wonderful family and a thriving ministry can never truly fill me up, right all my wrongs and soothe those deep insecurities.
No, I can’t read 1 Corinthians chapter 13 with eyes hungry to see what love should give me, and then demand it from those around me. I should read those steadfast Scriptures with the realization: This is the kind of love I can choose to give.
I can choose that my love will be patient. My love will be kind. My love won’t keep a record of wrongs. (Ouch — that’s a hard one, right?) I can choose that my love will protect and persevere. And I can choose to lay the cup of my heart at Jesus’ feet and stop twirling, twirling, twirling, hoping — no, demanding — that those around me do things for me they were never meant to do.
Love isn’t what I have the opportunity to get from this world. Love is what I have the opportunity to give.
Dear Lord, thank You so much for Your love. I know that because I am abundantly loved by You, I have an abundance of love to give. Help me today to live loved and to give love. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Editor’s Note: Content taken from the Encouragement for Today devotional, A Gut-Honest Look at Love, written by Lysa Terkeurst. You can read that piece in full here. All rights reserved.