Love is the end of any worthy pursuit. The test and proof of whether Jesus has truly been taught, demonstrated, and expressed is whether everyone grows in love. When the genuine truth of God—not some purported myth or sales pitch for some ulterior purpose—when the actual, genuine truth from Heaven takes root in our hearts, our hearts thus begin to grow larger and larger in love for and from everyone.
Growing in love includes recognizing love when others give it, even when they give it well cloaked.
Patience is also part of love. Someone who has not grown in love has not grown up. Someone who has not grown in patience has neither grown in love nor grown up.
To the extent that you struggle with patience, so must you cease all activity and pause until patience comes to you. If you can’t guide your subordinates at the office with gentleness, talk with your superiors about how to be more patient, consider taking a day off merely to pray for patience. Even ask those you supervise to help you to be more patient; give them permission to call you out on it when you’re not. Do the same with your children, parents, spouse, siblings, extended family, peers, coworkers, students, customers, clients, and trade partners.
Whatever area you struggle in to learn love, ask everyone in your life for a little help. Don’t go overboard with the drama, just quietly mention it as a personal goal and grant everyone an open invitation to bring it up in conversation: “I want to be more loving and patient. Tell me how.”
Get ready, though. You might cause an avalanche of feedback and it can overwhelm you. If you’re lucky, so many people might take you up on your offer to grant feedback that they critique you to tears. Those tears might wash away whatever hinders love in your life. They might even erode your pride to a point of such humility that they only way to listen is by…
…becoming more patient.
The candid feedback from friends who care enough to say so will make you more loving, but you only see what love you recognize.