1 Corinthians 13:4-8, 13

In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul taught about the qualities of love in order to help us understand what love is all about. Paul wrote that:

‘Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends’. (Corinthians 13:4-8)

Therefore, the qualities of love are patience, kindness, humility and faithfulness.

Love is patient: ‘Patience’ is the quality of being able to endure or bear suffering, toils, delay, anger or insult. It is the ability to calmly tolerate all difficulties that come your way in your relationship with your parents, teachers, friends and others in the society without showing annoyance or impatience.

When you try to be a good Christian by telling the truth or being obedient and respectful and your friends call you a ‘coward’ and you refuse to be angry with them, or fight them, you are being patient.

When your parents delay in getting you what you want and you show understanding, you are being patient.

When you join the long queue at the bus stop and refuse to jump the queue, you are being patient.

When you refuse to cheat during examinations and Weekly Continuous Assessment Tests/Evaluation, but study hard, day after day, in order to pass your examinations and tests, you are being patient.

When you are patient with yourself and those around you, then you have love for yourself and your fellow human beings.

The opposite of patience is impatience. When you are impatient you easily become angry or annoyed with your parents, teachers friends and even with yourself. Nobody likes you when you are impatient. It means you have no love for others and for yourself. Therefore, you should avoid ‘impatience’ and practice patience’.

 

Love is Kind: ‘Kindness’ is the quality of being able to think nice things about others and do them good. It is the ability to help others in need of our help whether they are our friends or not and whether they are our neighbours or strangers.

When you help your parents with household chores and other assignments, you are being kind.

When you go to the aid of your friends, neighbours and strangers, because they are in need, you are being kind.

Kindness also means sharing what you have with those who do not have. When you share your food and other items with your friends and mates because they have none, you are being kind.

When you share your money with beggars and other handicapped people along the streets, you are being kind.

When you share your time with your community and provide free labour for either environmental cleaning or community project, you are being kind.

You also show kindness when you care for the welfare and happiness of others.

When you care for the sick and suffering and visit them in hospitals and wish them speedy recovery, you are being kind.

When you care for the handicapped and the motherless children and visit them and give them gifts, you are being kind.

When you sympathize with, and comfort your friends and others who are in trouble or sorrow, you are being kind.

When you care for the success of your friends and mates and send them success cards when they are about to take their final examinations, you are being kind.

When you care for your parents and teachers and send them greeting cards at Christmas or Easter, you are being kind.

When you care for your friends who are far away and write letters to them often, you are being kind.

To be kind is also to be considerate. You are considerate when you think about how your actions will adversely affect those you love and those around you. When you are considerate and you refuse to say something or do something that will adversely affect the feelings of those you love and others around you, you are being kind.

The opposite of kindness is selfishness. You are selfish when you think only of your needs and refuse to help those who are in need of your help; you are selfish when you refuse to care for the welfare and happiness of others; you are selfish when you are inconsiderate and do not care whether your words and actions will affect those who are dear to you and those around you. Nobody likes a selfish person because he or she has no love in him or her. Therefore, you should avoid being selfish by helping, sharing with, and caring for your friends and others as well as having consideration for them.

 

Love is Humble: ‘Humility’ is the quality of being modest, and moderate and decent in whatever you think, feel, say and do. It is the ability to be submissive in your relationship with your parents, teachers, friends, mates and elders in the society.

When you are nice to your friends, mates, neighbours and strangers you have never seen before, you are being humble.

When you are respectful and obedient to school rules and to your parents, teachers and elders, you are being humble.

When you regard people from other tribes and countries as equals and refuse to discriminate against them on account of their tribe or nationality, you are being humble.

When you are bright in class and you are not boastful about it, or show off your knowledge to the annoyance of those who are not bright, you are being humble.

When you are decent in your mode of speech and manner of dressing, you are being humble. To be humble, therefore, is to be well behaved.

The opposite of ‘humility’ is pride, rudeness, arrogance and boastfulness.

You are proud and arrogant when you refuse to be nice and pleasant to your friends, neighbours and strangers; you are rude when you are disrespectful and disobedient to authority; you are proud when you regard others as inferior because of their tribe, nationality or academic ability; you are boastful when you show off your new dresses to the annoyance of friends who have not got new dresses; you are rude when you are not decent in your manner of speech and you use foul language. Nobody likes anyone who is proud, rude, arrogant and boastful because he or she has no love in him or her for anybody. You must avoid the opposite of humility and cultivate the qualities of modesty, moderation and decency.

 

Love is Faithful: ‘Faithfulness’ is the quality of being loyal to God, Jesus Christ, your country, your parents, teachers, friends and to yourselves. It is the ability to be firm and constant in holding fast to things that are true, good and noble. When you worship God only and abide by His Commandments as revealed to us through the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, you are being faithful.

When you accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour and follow in his footsteps, you are being faithful.

When you work hard and sacrifice your time and energy as true patriots and shun nepotism, tribalism, favouritism, bribery and corruption in order to make your Nation, strong, peaceful and united, you are being faithful.

When you are obedient to your parents and teachers, you are being faithful.

When you make promises to your friends and keep to your promises, you are being faithful.

When, as married men and women, you refuse to indulge in adultery, you are being faithful to your wife or to your husband.

When you do your work well both at home and at school and behave as a good and disciplined student, you are being faithful.

The opposite of faithfulness is unfaithfulness and disloyalty. You are unfaithful when you worship other gods apart from God and do not obey His Commandments as revealed to you in the teachings of Jesus Christ. You are unfaithful when, as a Christian, you deny or reject Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour. You are disloyal when you become unpatriotic by engaging in negative activities (such as corruption, kidnapping, cultism and militancy) that will make your country weak, disunited and ungovernable. You are unfaithful when you cheat and spy during exams and Weekly Continuous Assessment Tests/Evaluation to gain marks which you do not deserve. You are unfaithful, when you are disrespectful and disobedient to your parents, teachers and elders. You are unfaithful when you break your promises made to your friends. You are unfaithful when you commit adultery. You are unfaithful when you refuse to do your work well at home and at school and behave as bad and indisciplined children.

 

Religious Guidance and Counselling

God wants you to work hard as you grow up

Some of you are hard working. You work when there is work to do, and play when there isn’t work to do. In this way you pass all your examinations with distinction to become a professional. You will get a well paid good job and marry and raise your own Christian family in your own home.

But some of you are still lazy. You play all the time and do not work. If you continue this way, you will fail all your examinations and you will not become a professional. You will not be able to get a good paying job. You may become a drug pusher; an armed robber, kidnapper or militant. This is not good for you.

God wants all of you to pray to Him through Jesus to help you to be hard working as you grow up so that you will pass all your examinations with distinction and become a professional; and get a well paid good job and marry and raise your own Christian family in your own home.

 

God wants you to obey your rulers

The Bible makes it plain that God is the one who appoints rulers to govern us. When we obey our rulers, we obey God Himself, and there is good governance. Therefore, we should all pray to God through Jesus to help us grow up to obey our leaders so that we will have good governance for our country to achieve unity, peace and progress.

 

Religious and Moral Lessons

It is good to work hard and qualify as a professional. You must learn to work hard and qualify as a professional.

Laziness leads to failure in life. You must learn to shun and condemn laziness because it leads to failure in life.

Our rulers are appointed by God. You must learn to pray to God through Jesus to help obey your rulers since they are appointed by God.

We carry out our civic responsibilities when we pay our taxes, rates and levies promptly. You must learn to carry out your civic responsibilities when you grow up, by paying your taxes, rates and levies promptly.

The qualities of love, which are patience, kindness, humility and faithfulness, help you to know whether your thoughts, words and actions portray love or not. Therefore, you must learn to pray to God through Jesus to help you to be:

  • Patient with others and with yourself in order to show love.
  • Kind-hearted, for others to know that you love them.
  • Humble in all things, so that others may know that you love them.
  • Faithful and loyal to God, your Nation, your friends and all those you are in contact with, since this is the surest way of showing your love.

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