Today's guest writer is Jennifer E. Thomas, and she's sharing with us the Scripture of 1 Corinthians 13 and its impact on her life. Read on to learn about her sacrificial love and the lessons she learned along the way. It's another Motivational Monday Moment...
“Love is patient and kind…” (1 Corinthians 13:4) Those words always go through my mind when I think about the 13th chapter of 1 Corinthians. I guess that’s God’s way of reminding me how to love. My aunt first told me about love in my 20s when she gave me a Good News Bible. She put a note by 1 Corinthians 13, “Read.” I can’t remember why she told me to read the scripture, but it’s been with me ever since she instructed me to read it. It was important to her for me to read it and love is important to God because the word is mentioned in the Bible hundreds of times.
In this scripture, we learn how God wants us to love. We are told love is patient and kind, love gives because it loves to give, love puts away the hurts of the past, love wants the best for others, love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things, love never fails, love is eternal. In 1 Corinthians 13:5 it says, “Love is not ill-mannered or selfish or irritable, love does not keep a record of wrongs…” Take out the word love and replace it with your name. How do you measure up? When I put my name in place of love, I have to admit I fall short at times. God set the bar high.
While I was preparing this piece I thought about my relationship with my mother. There were times I was showing love the way the scripture intended and there were times I wasn’t. I was the caregiver for my mother for over 20 years until her death in 2015. In June 1991, she had a stroke while I was home for the summer from college getting ready to leave for work. I hate to imagine what could have happened had I already left for work when she had the stroke. I thank God I was there. I was at the hospital everyday going to her therapy sessions with her and making sure she was okay. I took a semester off so that I could continue to be with her during her rehabilitation. We hired a live-in caretaker so that I could continue my education and she stayed with my mother for almost a year. I left school and became her full-time caregiver because we weren’t able to find another caregiver. A friend told me to put my mother in a nursing home when I told her my mother had a stroke and I wasn’t coming back to school the next semester. That thought never crossed my mind and I was taken aback by her comment. I loved my mother and I wanted to take care of her. I wanted nothing in return.
When I first started caregiving for my mother, following the scripture wasn’t a tall order, but then I took it to the extreme because I did not know how to ask for help. I needed help. I was bearing and enduring to the point where I lost myself. I found myself slacking on some of my caregiving responsibilities and I would sometimes treat my mother badly. That’s not how God intended us to love. I hate that there were times when I treated my mother badly. I took care of my mother the best I knew how. Could I have done better? Yes. I told her I wasn’t taking care of her as best as I should, but she understood that I was trying given the circumstance. We loved one another. I especially loved cooking something special for her. She loved food. Hindsight is always 20/20 and I would do things differently if I had the chance. I would definitely be more patient and kind.
I am thankful that my aunt introduced me to this scripture. She passed in 2001. When I married, I honored her memory by having this scripture read during the ceremony.
Thanks for joining me for another Motivational Monday Moment! Please leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you!
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