Love yourself

1 Corinthians 13

 1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.

 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

 8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

 13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

intimate heartI was on a flight returning from a recent vacation, and finally reading the book that I had brought with me. It was on one of my favorite topics, restoring life to brokenness. At one point, the book quoted the above verses, and I had a thought.

Why do I only apply those verses to other people?

I’ve read this chapter hundreds of times, and memorized most of it. I always wanted to be the “good Christian” who loved well. If the “greatest of these” is love, I was going to chase after that.

I believe that love is the core of Jesus and following him. However, nowhere in these verses do I read that they are meant only for loving other people. Verse 5 does mention others: love doesn’t dishonor people or seek after yourself, but this doesn’t mean that we don’t honor ourselves and to be focused on not seeking our own good can often lead to a false sense of humility.

How would my life be different if I lived these verses for myself?

How would YOUR life be different if you read these verses and lived them out for yourself?

As I re-read this chapter, I slowly go through each “love is…” and talk about doing that for myself. Having patience, kindness, not giving up, etc.

This week, I encouraged a friend to write out 25 things he liked about himself and 25 things he wants for himself. So I present the challenge for you. Why not get crazy? Aim for 50. Share one or two of those in the comments below, don’t be shy!

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  1. Excellent post thanks for sharing. I enjoy reading your blog very much because of your point of view on things. You have very useful information here.

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  2. I have thought about this a little too. The thing that made me think is "Love your neighbor as yourself."
    And I thought, "If I do not love myself, and I am loving my neighbor as I love myself (which is not much) then I am not really loving my neighbor much!" I don't know if that makes sense because it is hard to explain, but that is how it hit me. 🙂

    • kylajoyful

      Yes! That makes perfect sense. The bible doesn't say "love your neighbor more than yourself" or "love your neighbor and don't love yourself". How are you finding ways to love yourself well? Also, I like your blog. What an amazing story about your friend!

  3. ColleenMary

    Thanks so much for this. I am in the middle of trying to understand what it might mean to love myself AND be a disciple of Christ. I spent the 18 years of my recently-ended marriage trying to be loving and forgiving in the face of repeated cruel and miserable behavior–I thought that was my job as a wife, a good person, a Christian, someone who loves . . . I am beginning to realize that whatever I might have thought at the time, "being loving and forgiving" is not the same as "refusing to resist cruelty" or "accepting abuse." Somehow I need to figure out how to be loving towards someone else AND love myself at the same time. I have no idea how to do it at the moment, but I'm working on it. I used to assume that any attempt to stand up for myself was simply selfishness and arrogance . . .

    • kylajoyful

      Colleen Mary, I'm so glad you resonated with this post. You are muchly loved. It's a beautiful and redemptive goal, to learn to love yourself as Christ loves you. You will in turn be able to love others more richly than ever before. Thanks for sharing your story. I hope this blog and the conversations here will encourage you on your new adventure.

  4. Thanks for the reminder Kyle! Great post.

  5. No quiseton this is the place to get this info, thanks y’all.

  6. Melinda,Thank you for your prayers, and for your sevants heart that always so much, encourages me.I too, am headed out for a Women’s condrence up in Salina. It is called, Wonderful Weekend for Women, and I’ll come back sharing a nugget or two with you.I love ya much!Yolanda

  7. I can’t believe I’ve been going for years without knowing that.

  8. interasante articulo, pero me surgieron dudas cuando relacionas a Pedro con Judasy Jesus.Si Pedro era hermano de Jesus debe haber probablemente tenido su misma edad( Si Jesus fue el primogenito, un poco menos, si no creemos eso , quizas un poco más ).Para la edad que Jesus empezó su ministerio rondaba los 30, y si Pedro tenìa aprox los mismos 30 se me hace raro un hijo adulto( Judas)

  9. I haven’t read through all the comments, however I don’t think there was anyone saying anything negative about circumcising a newborn baby boy. In my opinion, this is much like a decision to pierce a girl’s ears. So my question would be to all those who are criticizing the choice to pierce your daughter’s ears, do they or would they make the choice to circumcise their infant son? Just a thought

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