The Process of Our Character

I Corinthians 13-4-7 4Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boiled over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.  5It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].  6It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.  7Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. 8Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end].
Love bears up under anything and everything that comes. If we look at what it means to “bear up”, we see quite a few definitions- To be able to endure something without great distress or annoyance; To hold or support a weight or something heavy; To withstand being subjected to a particular action. We have already seen how we are to endure even situations where we are wrongfully treated, how we are not supposed to be annoyed or irritated by the actions of others, and how we aren’t to pay attention to mistreatment. However, as I was studying this out I found some other things that we can learn about bearing up under anything that comes our way. To bear up also means to hold a particular thought, feeling or idea in mind, and to yield something by natural process or something desirable or valuable.
I love this, because when we do everything we can to become doers of the Word, it produces something so wonderful in us. We may think we are just trying to learn how to handle the situations in our lives better or that we are perfecting our love walk, but what is developed in us is actually something so much more. Our character becomes refined. This process of maturing in God is something Jesus talks about in Matthew 5:48 48You, therefore, must be perfect [growing into complete maturity of godliness in mind and character, having reached the proper height of virtue and integrity], as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Our character is not only the set of qualities that we possess, but also our public reputation. Luke 6:44-45 says 44For each tree is known and identified by its own fruit; for figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor is a cluster of grapes picked from a bramblebush. 45The upright (honorable, intrinsically good) man out of the good treasure [stored] in his heart produces what is upright (honorable and intrinsically good), and the evil man out of the evil storehouse brings forth that which is depraved (wicked and intrinsically evil); for out of the abundance (overflow) of the heart his mouth speaks. When we have the character of God infused in us, it will be evident to everyone we come into contact with. We will be known by the fruit that we produce.
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