1 Corinthians 13:7-8 (New American Standard Bible)
7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away.
The fear of rejection may be one of the most basic fears of the human experience. Dr. Joe Harding tells a heart-warming story of a man who finally decided to ask his boss for a raise in salary. It was Friday. He told his wife that morning what he was about to do, All day the man felt nervous and apprehensive. Late in the afternoon he summoned the courage to approach his employer. To his delight, the boss agreed to a raise.
The man arrived home to a beautiful table set with their best china. Candles were lighted. His wife had prepared a festive meal. Immediately he figured that someone from the office had tipped her off! Finding his wife in the kitchen, he told her the good news. They embraced and kissed, then sat down to a wonderful meal. Next to his plate the man found a beautiful lettered note. It read: "Congratulations, darling! I knew you'd get the raise! These things will tell you how much I love you."
While on his way to the kitchen to get dessert he noticed that a second card had fallen from her pocket. Picking it off the floor, he read: "Don't worry about not getting the raise! You deserve it anyway! These things will tell you how much I love you."
Total acceptance! Total love. Her love for him was not contingent upon his success at work. In fact, just the opposite. If he were to fail there, if he were to be rejected by his boss he'd be all the more accepted at home. She stood behind him no matter what; softening the blows, healing the wounds, believing in him, loving him. We can be rejected by almost anyone if we're loved by one.
That's the way families can be with each other. And I like to think that's the way God is with us, too! "We love because he first loved us."
Dear Lord we pray that we would have a love that is strong in any situation. In Jesus’ name, Amen.