Love is not irritable or resentful. The story is told in the Old Testament of a man, actually just a boy, who was the youngest and most loved and favored son. His older brothers were extremely jealous. I have often marveled at Joseph; even though his brothers had committed the unthinkable to him, his love for God and his love for them removed any irritation or resentment he may have felt toward them.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not
arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not
irritable or resentful.
1 Corinthians 13:4-5, ESV
The story is told in the Old Testament of a man, actually just a boy, who was the youngest and most loved and favored son. His older brothers were extremely jealous. When the opportunity arose, they sold their brother to slave traders heading to Egypt. Suddenly, this young man's life had been turned upside down.
Joseph's troubles did not end here, however; after serving a man faithfully for several years, the wife of his master tried to seduce him. He ran from the house, leaving his cloak behind. The enraged wife then accused him of trying to seduce her causing his angry master to throw Joseph into prison.
God faithfully protected Joseph in the prison, but it was many years before he was miraculously released from prison to become the second highest official in all of the land of Egypt. A great famine brought people from surrounding countries into Egypt to buy grain. When Joseph's brothers came to Egypt to buy grain, Joseph recognized them. Here was his opportunity to get back at his brothers; their life was in his hands! That is not the way, however, that Joseph reacted to them. Love is not irritable or resentful!
When Joseph finally revealed his true identity to his brothers, they were afraid for their lives. They knew that they deserved retaliation for what they had done. Joseph, however, was a faithful man of God and held no resentment toward his brothers for what they had done. Do you remember Joseph's words to them?
“Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? 20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. Genesis 50:19-20
Love is not irritable or resentful. I have often marveled at Joseph; even though his brothers had committed the unthinkable to him, his love for God and his love for them removed any irritation or resentment he may have felt toward them.
As 1 Corinthians 13 continues to unfold before us, we begin to understand more and more, that the Christian is called to live a life completely opposite of what we normally see around us. The world thinks that Christians are weak; but in reality, living the Christian life is hard work. As a matter of fact, it is impossible to live the Christian life as we are called to apart from the help of God.
Pray today that God would fill you with His love and give you the ability to let go of irritations and resentments that you may have held onto for years.
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