Do I Have Abiding Love?

 Abiding means enduring, remaining, surviving, long-lasting, and steadfast.  Do we really love like Christ loves? His love is enduring, constant, and steadfast.

1.  Abiding love overlooks the faults of others.

If I am to exhibit Abiding Love, I must be willing to get the beam out of my own eye before I try to get the speck out of my brother or sister’s eye.

Matthew 7:5  Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

Psalms 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:  And see if [there be any] wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

We will not become bitter with others like Jeremiah did in Lamentations 3.  Bitterness causes us to think sinful thoughts as well as look for ways to express our anger, wrath, clamor, slander, and malice against those we think have offended us.

Ephesians 4:31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

2.  Abiding love is patient.

It is common for us as women to get aggravated when things don’t go our way, when something interferes with our plans, or when we feel that we didn’t  somehow get a fair deal. However, by an act of our will, we can be patient whether we feel like it or not. It is our personal choice to obey God. When we obey, the Holy Spirit  helps us develop the character quality of patience. We can also use God’s Word to help us develop patience. If we memorize Scripture and meditate on different verses when we feel irritations building, God’s Word can diffuse those bitter thoughts.

3.  Abiding love is kind.

Being kind is a key to creating a proper atmosphere wherever we go. We can show kindness by speaking in a gentle tone of voice and doing kind acts. Kindness draws people to us, whereas criticism and harshness push them away. When we think of God’s goodness, it  encourages us to do better.

Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

4. Abiding love is not jealous.

Jealousy is fear of being displaced by another person or thing. It may be a valid concern or it may be a “vain imagination”.

II Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.

5.  Abiding love does not brag or is not arrogant.

The Greek word for “brag means to talk conceitedly. Conceit is an excessive appreciation of one’s own worth. An arrogant heart is full of self-importance. Husbands find it difficult to deal with arrogant wives. They are opinionated and defensive  when someone disagrees with, reproves, or corrects them. An arrogant and “know it all attitude reveals pride in their hearts.

6.  Abiding love does not seek its own way.

The opposite of love is selfishness.  The most frequent problem that pastors and marriage counselors encounter between husbands and wives is selfishness. A wife can show love to her husband by giving in to his wishes as long as long as her husband does not ask her to sin. She should be more concerned with what she does for him than what he does for her. A stubborn, selfish woman has the ability to provoke her husband, her family, and her friends to frustration and discouragement.

Philippians 2:4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. I Corinthians 13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

7.  Abiding love endures all things.

If we have abiding love, we will  see trials and pressures as special opportunities to become more like the Lord Jesus.  We will not always enjoy these difficult times, but we will endure them with God’s help.  We tell ourselves,  “This is difficult but with God’s grace we can endure.”