1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NLT) – Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
If you’ve ever been to a wedding, I would guess that you’ve probably heard a certain set of Bible verses at least once or twice. You’re probably thinking about the exact chapter right now.
What is it? 1 Corinthians 13.
The de facto “love chapter” of the Bible conveys all the traits that love is and does, and all sounds really nice and positive at a wedding but, all too often, gets forgotten a few weeks, months, or years down the road.
Rather than imposing upon our spouse how they should act towards us, I would encourage you to revisit this passage and use it as a “marriage mirror” to determine how you can love your spouse more. No matter how long you’ve been married, it’d be helpful to ask yourself a few questions in light of this passage.
- “Love is patient”. (When am I impatient with my spouse?)
- “Love is kind.” (When am I unkind to my spouse?)
- “Love is not jealous.” (In what ways am I jealous of my spouse rather than happy for their blessings?)
- “Love is not boastful.” (Does my spouse hear me mainly talking about myself?)
- “Love is not proud.” (Does my spouse experience me as a proud, unteachable person?)
- “Love is not rude.” (How am I rude to my spouse?)
- “Love does not demand its own way.” (How does my spouse find me inconsiderate?)
- “Love is not irritable.” (When am I grumpy and moody?)
- “Love keeps no record of being wronged.” (What bitterness am I holding onto and using as a weapon against my spouse?)
- “Love does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.” (What unjust and untruthful things do I do and say to or about my spouse?)
- “Love never gives up.” (When have I given up on my spouse and our marriage?)
- “Love never loses faith and is always hopeful.” (What parts of my spouse and our marriage have I lost hope will ever improve?)
- “Love endures through every circumstance.” (In what circumstances do I use an excuse to give up and stop trying to love my spouse?)
After introspectively reading through this list, I would encourage you to talk with your spouse and repent of any areas where you’ve failed and give them grace and forgiveness (whether it’s in the moment or a process towards forgiveness) in the areas where they’ve failed. Ask God to help you both to love each other better by the power of the Holy Spirit.