Part 3 of a “Segment-by-Challenging-Segment” Series of 1 Corinthians 13
1 Corinthians 13:4c
Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; … (NASB)
Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, … (Amplified)
Beginning the discussion:
“You think leaving your child at school on his first day of kindergarten is tough? You have no idea the pain of being separated from your child!” My words were clearly unsympathetic to my friend when she confided to me how she teared up after leaving her oldest child at school for the first time. I was unable to empathize because I was separated from my small children due to a constant battle with anorexia nervosa, a serious eating disorder. I would have given anything if my children would be returning home after just a few hours of school.
I regret the way I acted towards her. I wish I could take back many words I spoke during those painful years when I wasn’t able to raise my children. It’s not fair! raged within me. Indeed, I was boiling over with jealousy—an emotion that had control over me for years. (I am thankful that God enabled me to maintain a close relationship with my children in spite of my attitude and not raising them.)
This week, we are focusing on overcoming jealousy in our progressive goal of memorizing and obeying 1 Corinthians 13:4-7a. My daughter, Wendy, commented (the first!) on my last post on how God’s love, patience and kindness helps her when her temper is ready to flare. I responded by confessing that due to my meditating that week about responding kindly (see last weeks’ verse), I avoided a confrontation with a friend that weekend.
As you probably guessed by now, God and I have lots of conversations regarding my attitudes and my tongue. I sincerely want to overcome these sinful traits. That is, after all, why I began this blog.
Recently, on the way to Louisiana to see my children (and grandchildren!) I listened to a CD by Terry Workman, the pastor of Victory Harvest Church in Baton Rouge. In that recording he spoke about the time he refused to give into jealousy when a co-worker got the promotion that he was hoping for. He said he spent hours banging pots together while declaring, “I will not be jealous!” God actually helped him to overcome his jealousy to the point that he sought ways to help that co-worker succeed in his new position. I replayed that part of the CD several times! “God, do that in me,” I prayed out loud in my car.
Is that your prayer, too?
Discussion Points for 1 Corinthians 13:4a: Love is patient; love is kind and is not jealous:
• Is jealousy damaging any of your relationships at home, work, or school?
• With God’s help, are you willing to overcome jealousy by at least praying for your rivals to succeed?
• What other ways have you struggled with and overcome jealousy?
To help you memorize this verse, you can write the scripture out by hand on an index card. Or click on the Biblegate.com link to copy and paste the verse in any Bible translation you choose. The “Preparing Scripture Memory Cards” tab may also be helpful.