That’s What Love Is

Love is patient.
Love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast,
it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others,
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.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Love is the way He gently reminds me that He is God and I am not.  Love is the way that He picks up my pieces when my table falls down and He shows me how to build a better one.  Love is the way that He holds my world in His hands and He never forgets me and I am never too much for Him.

The character of God’s love is, I think, so evident in Genesis 3:21.  It’s the aftermath of the whole eating from the Forbidden Tree.  It’s at the end, when all is said and done.  The Serpent has convinced Eve and her husband, who was with her, that eating from this Forbidden Tree is the better way.  Adam and Eve have eaten…their lives and their minds are immediately are changed.  They are no longer naked and unashamed, they are aware of their nakedness, aware of themselves.  I think, though it isn’t stated, that they could suddenly perceive just how unrighteous and unworthy they were.  Did they fear that He wouldn’t love them now, knowing what they’d done?

They hastily stitched together coverings from fig leaves.  And clad in these fig leaves, they hid from their Maker.

God, of course, has seen the whole thing.  He knew where they were and what they’ve done.  He’s come to them and He’s asked some questions.

They’ve played the finger pointing game.  Adam blames Eve, Eve blames the serpent.  They’ve made their confession and God has given His consequences.  It’s all set in motion, the whole world changed because of this moment in time.

And then, God does something.

“The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.”

He could’ve just let them figure it out for themselves.  They’d broken the ONE rule.  And they had their fig leaves.  Their scratchy, falling to pieces, uncomfortable fig leaves.  They’d made their own clothes.

But He wanted better for them.

Because He works all things together for good.

And so, God Almighty, Maker of All, made clothes for Adam and Eve.

 I see so much of His tenderness in this act.  This gift He makes them says, “I love you.  You’re still mine.  I am still for you.  You are okay.  I want better for you.”

He could see that the fig leaves were not going to hold up, that they were inadequate…manmade things don’t last the way God-made things do.  All of our best efforts just fall to pieces but the things that God makes last.

The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and His wife and clothed them.

This is love.

He gave them better than what they had, though they were undeserving.  He gave them provision, even though the mess they made was undeniably their fault.  He gave them a gift, because He is love and He can’t be anything but Love.

This is the same God who is in our midst today.  He is still love and He still gives us better than we can make for ourselves.  He still provides, even when we’ve disobeyed and even when we’ve made our own mess.  He still gives gifts because He is love and He can’t be anything but Love.

God is patient.
God is kind.
God does not envy,
God does not boast,
God is not proud.
God does not dishonor others,
God is not self-seeking,
God is not easily angered,
God keeps no record of wrongs.
God does not delight in evil but God rejoices with the truth.
God always protects,
God always trusts,
God always hopes,
God always perseveres.

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