The world is desperate for love, but sadly misunderstands the meaning of the word. To find the true meaning of love, we must go to the Word of God-for God is love. The following is a list of 15 characteristics from 1 Corinthians 13. Look closely at each characteristic and you may discover specific areas of need in your life.

As you read, study, and meditate on this beloved chapter of God's Word, take some time to reflect on each property of love and answer the questions that follow.

Love suffers long (v.4)

  • Do you respond as Christ would when people mistreat you?
  • Are you patient when people inconvenience you or bother you?
  • Are you long-suffering when others take advantage of you? Or quick to express irritation or anger.
  • Is there anyone that you are trying to pay back for what they have done to you?
  • Are you genuinely concerned for the welfare of those who have wronged you? Do you wait patiently to see the effects of your love in their lives?


    Love is kind (v.4)

  • Are you a kind, considerate, and respectful person?
  • Are you quick to render yourself useful to others? Do you search for opportunities to be helpful?
  • Are you especially eager to share in practical ways with the less fortunate?
  • Are you kind in your home? With your closest associates at work?
  • Are you kind with your tongue, using well-chosen words to encourage others?


    Love does not envy (v.4)

  • Do you rejoice with those who rejoice?
  • Are you genuinely glad when someone else is promoted, gets a raise, or is recognized—and you are overlooked? Do you view others as rivals?
  • Do you respond with love:


    • When your mate gets attention, praise or honor that you know is not deserved?
    • When your friend's child excels at sports, music or academics-and your friend loves to tell you about it?
    • When a brother's or sister's family is financially prosperous while your family is struggling to make ends meet?



  • Are you content with the basic necessities of life and a right relationship with God? Or, do you have an unhealthy possessiveness of things?


    Love does not parade itself (v.4)

  • Do you boast about your abilities, gifts, accomplishments, or possessions?
  • Are you self-promoting, trying to draw attention to yourself with your words?
  • Do you flatter others with a secret hope of advancement?
  • Do you enjoy telling about your achievements more than listening to the accomplishments of others?
  • Are you content to do good works without recognition or praise?
  • Do you accept credit for things God has done?


    Love is not puffed up (v.4)

  • Do you have an accurate assessment of your strengths and weaknesses?
  • Do you harbor a spirit of pride-an inflated view of yourself?
  • Do you feel your spiritual gift is superior to other's gifts?
  • Do you communicate an attitude of spiritual superiority toward your husband? Your family? Your work associates?


    Love does not behave rudely (v.5)

  • Do you have good manners?
  • Are you courteous to others, especially in your home?
  • Are you tactful-sensitive to the feelings of others and choosing words carefully-do you don't needlessly offend?
  • Are you agreeable when you must disagree with someone?
  • Do you use sarcasm or put-downs that show disrespect?


    Love does not seek its own (v.5)

  • Do you love your neighbor as yourself?
  • Do you consciously look out for the welfare of others above your own?
  • Are you self-protective of your time? Assertive of your rights?
  • Is your reputation a prime concern?
  • Do you search your heart's motives before acting?
  • Do you pray for other's needs more than your own?


    Love is not provoked (v.5)

  • Do you have the kind of love that overlooks offenses? Or, do you get exasperated and irritated when you don't get your way?
  • Do you fly off the handle or blow up when "crossed"?
  • Are you easily upset by unpleasant circumstances that are beyond your ability to control or change?
  • Do you cast blame, when in reality you are simply being touchy or thin-skinned?


    Part 2