“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. Loves bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is patient. When we as followers of Christ find ourselves in the midst of difficulties, sufferings, persecution, we are to respond with great patience and endurance, looking beyond that which challenges and hurts us, to the victory that lies ahead. We are confident, not arrogantly so, but quietly and serenely, always seeking to reach out in friendship even to those who persecute us. This seems to contradict the urges which we as humans feel when wronged – is it possible to be so good? When we believe in the grace and help of God, yes, it is possible – we need only surrender to him. In the persecution we face in these times we must try to separate what others do to us from those who do them so we may come to love them with the love of Christ. St Genesius and all the martyrs struggled to do this, and their victory in this regard was seen in their generous forgiveness and prayer for those who killed them. We must never let tribulation overcome our desire to live like Christ, to endure like Christ and forgive like Christ. There is no greater victory over our persecutors than reconciliation.
Among our intentions today, we pray also for the grace to endure all things with the love and grace of Christ.