Reading my Bible recently I came to 1 Corinthians 13, the love chapter. I’ve read it numerous times and it always convicts me. I know I need to be more patient and less proud. I want to rejoice with the truth and not be easily angered.
This day was different. Suddenly the verses made perfect sense in how I need to love my children. My Father opened my eyes to His Word as if I was reading them for the first time. It’s not that I didn’t understand the verses before. Only now that I’ve been a mom for a dozen years the telescope of my life focuses differently.
1 Corinthian 13: 1- 8
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or clanging cymbal.
If I have gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking.
It is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
And now what my loving Shepherd showed me so clearly as if the words were written on the page. This is how God wants me to love my children and it’s only possible with Him loving through me. Love without my Savior’s love in me is impossible.
1 Corinthians in a Mom’s words:
If I give my children great advice and help them with their homework, but I don’t love them when they make mistakes, I haven’t truly helped them.
If God gives me the ability to explain the future to my children, and I impress them with my understanding of amazing concepts, and if I pray with my children and miracles happen, but I don’t take time to listen when they are hurting, then I haven’t said anything important.
If I buy extravagant gifts for my children and cook and clean and simply wear myself out serving them, but I yell at them when I’m frustrated, I haven’t accomplished anything of lasting significance.
I love my children when I am patient when they don’t obey me the first time.
I love my children when I am kind to them even though they are speaking to me disrespectfully.
I love my children when I do not compare them to other children who I think are making better choices.
I love my children when I don’t tell them about all of the great things I’ve accomplished in life or my good choices. This will only leave them frustrated.
I love my children when they hear me say to other moms that it is God working in my children and not my great parenting that is making a difference in their lives.
I love my children when I don’t say anything rude to them when they are fighting with each other.
I love my children when I don’t try to make them act perfectly in front of others. They know when I just want to look good as a mom.
I love my children when I don’t get angry when they do something childish. I remind myself they are still children and they are learning.
I love my children when I don’t tell them, “I can’t believe you did that again!”
I love my children when I don’t try to catch them doing something wrong. I can love them by looking for the things they do right and complimenting them.
I love my children when I always make choices to protect them even if embarrasses them in front of their friends.
I love my children when I always trust them in God’s hand, without crushing their independence.
I love my children when I always hope they will do better tomorrow and don’t tell them they will always make bad choices.
I love my children when I always persevere in the being the mom they need rather than allowing them to do what they think is best.
I love my children when I keep on loving them no matter what they do and say.
Copyright © words and pictures by Jane Carole Stein