The Practice of Love


practice makes perfect

or so I’ve heard it said.

and so it is true when

playing the piano

or baseball,

making pie crusts

or pottery,

and if at first you don’t succeed,

try, try again.

No one expects you to get it right the first time.

there is respect in the pursuit.

it requires discipline and commitment,

and can not trust in talent alone,

the quest to perfection.

why is it then, that we expect to get love right

the first time?

love requires practice too.

piano practice has scales

baseball, drills

pie crusts, repetition

pottery, patience.

Love practices in action.

it won’t be suppressed.

Love defies inaction.

for that is what makes it passionate.

Compulsion to act.

to speak.

to do something of value.

How does love act?

Love is patient.

Love is kind.

It is not jealous or envious.

It is not full of pride, or rudeness.

Love does not insist on having its own way.

Love isn’t easily provoked to anger.

It doesn’t hold grudges.

Love endures.

It lasts.

It won’t give up.

No greater love has any man than to lay down his life for his friends.

how can you die for someone,

if you are unwilling to live for them?

how can you live for them,

if you are unwilling to practice?


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39 thoughts on “The Practice of Love

  1. Nicely written. Really well done.
    When my daughter and son-in-law were married I gave them a cross stitch of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. At the top was a heart of roses and the verses were bordered in ribbon all stitched. When they moved into their first home, I was so touched to see it in their bedroom as a daily reminder.

    • Wow! You either live on the east coast or you are an early riser like me! Thanks for your encouraging words…I try to speak a personalized I Cor. 13 every day. ie….I am patient, I am kind….etc.

  2. Hi JourneytoEpiphany:
    Beautiful! post I guess I would would only add that sometimes what starts out as love is love “in disguise,” a fancy trick where one person plays the chameleon. It takes practice recognizing this type of person and extricating oneself before one gets too far in, too deeply hurt. I plan to write about this in August. My most favorite month of the year — but also the month filled with my greatest joys and my greatest losses.

    • I thought of a lot of things I could add like that, but I didn’t want to limit the piece to romantic love. Love must be practiced on children, bosses, teachers, students and garbage men! Why is August your favorite, I wonder?

  3. And sometimes it requires a very keen eye, to discern it in places you wouldn’t think it is. It’s hard to see in things like sweating all day in a hot restaurant kitchen or wrestling with 100+ year old wiring in a creaky house, but the wife and I are working on it! 🙂

  4. I like to compare it to the practice of medicine. There is only the One showing perfect love. The rest of us are practicing the art of LOVE. Thanks be to God with had an example in Jesus. 🙂

    • Great analogy. I was just reminding myself about the practice of medicine yesterday when it felt like the medical profession really messed up on the relative of a friend. They’re just practicing, they aren’t God!

  5. Absolutely beautiful. Thank you for this, Friend. I see so many leave when another ‘fails’ at love: falls down, makes a mistake, doesn’t get it quite right. Friendships broken, marriages ended, relationships fractured. And yet, I see how many times I don’t get it quite right. I se how very much I still need to grow, and I am once again overwhelmed by HIS perfect love and His abundant grace, poured out to overflowing. Gives me the courage to get back up again and know that it will all be okay.

  6. not long ago i was remembered by a friend that we are called to practice, without worry for perfecting. the transformation is often slower than i’d like, but it is living it in the daily – the practice.

    thank you for the reminder, again; obviously a lesson i need over and over.
    and funny, last night i caught the end of an old re-run, A Walk To Remember, and the father read some version of 1 Corinthians 13 at their wedding :}

  7. Love takes practice. I like that. We assume it is something we are born with, but I’m not sure that is the case. We learn to love, just like we learn to trust. Thanks for this!

  8. Thanks for your hop and encouragement over to my blog. I just love the “Strawberry Heart” photo. That would make a great header for you! Many blessings to you today!

  9. Wonderful insights written in an enjoyable format. Loved your choice about that. By the way, inside my husband’s wedding ring I had inscribed, “Love never faileth.”

    • No, I’m not a quilter. But the story of the quilt is interesting. I purchased a small antique dropleaf table, and as an extra, the shop dealer threw in a runner and seat cushions made from the scraps leftover from an antique quilt.

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