This scripture has been rolling around in my head lately,
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
~1 Peter 4:8
I love people. I mean, I would consider myself a people-person. But, let’s be honest – people are annoying sometimes. At least, the people around me are. The people around me have never mastered the art of reading my mind and doing my bidding without my even asking. Seriously! When will these people get with the program? The people I know have needs that sometimes interrupt my plans. Like, when I’m in the middle of a good book, they still want to eat meals! They have emotions and mood swings and personalities that do not always match my emotions and mood swings and personality. Sometimes, the people around me are like sandpaper or like nails on a chalkboard or like that annoying stink bug that keeps buzzing out of the light fixture just when I start to doze off.
And that’s only the stuff people do unintentionally! Sometimes these people in my life actively hurt me. Sometimes the little people scream, “No, I will not do that!” or “Leave me alone! I don’t like you!” And the big people say with their actions, “What you want is not important to me.” Sometimes the people I know abuse my kindness or take me for granted. They make selfish decisions that impact me. Sometimes people say untrue things about me or they find delight in my mistakes or shortcomings. Some people lie to my face, insulting my intelligence. I mean, for real, some people are a knife in my back, a pain in my neck, a rip in my heart.
Not only do I have to deal with annoying people, sometimes I AM the annoying person. I am selfish and prideful. I am arrogant. I can be lazy and forgetful and scatter-brained. When I am tired, I can be extremely grouchy and impatient. I can be critical in others of the very things I myself do! Sometimes, I am so annoying I want to get away from me!
The only remedy I know for dealing with such human humans is LOVE. Love can cover all of these grievances and annoyances and sins.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. . .
~1 Cor. 13:4-8
Wow! No wonder love can cover a multitude of sins! Patient, kind, humble, polite, not self-seeking, not angered easily. Yes, those attributes would cover all the grievances and annoyances and sins that need to be covered.
But, goodness! I need help! Because there is no way I can muster up that kind of love on my own. I know me. I know my limitations. Loving like that? All the time? Or, at the very least, when it is most needed, when a multitude of sins needs to be covered over? No. Can. Do. Thankyouverymuch!
Fortunately, I have help.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope . . .
~1 Peter 1:3
We love because he first loved us.
~1 John 4:19
We can love others above all else because He loves us and births us into His Spirit. God is Love. And God’s Spirit lives within us. Love lives in us.
When I tap into the Love living in me, I can love others with kindness, patience, humility and perseverance. I can straight-up 1 Corinthians 13 love them even though they annoy the ever-living daylights out of me.
I don’t know about you and the people in your life, but the people in my life and I need this LOVE that covers over a multitude of sins.