“Love is never … rude”.

1 Cor 13:5 NEB

“It is a significant fact that in Greek (the language in which the New Testament was originally written and out of which it has been translated into English) the word for grace and the word for charm are the same word. There is a kind of Christianity which takes delight in being blunt and almost brutal. There is strength in it but there is no winsomeness. Lightfoot of Durham said of one of his students, Arthur P Sim, ‘Let him go where he will, his face will be a sermon in itself’. There is a graciousness in Christian love which never forgets that courtesy and tact and politeness may possibly be regarded as lesser virtues but they are lovely things” (W. Barclay, The Letters to the Corinthians, p135).

Like kindness, this outworking of love comes into play in the little moments, in the almost inconsequential times of dealing with and working with others. It means cultivating a keen sensitivity to where others are, and to what they may be thinking and feeling. It involves a kind word, an appreciative comment, a small hand of help, a complimentary remark, in short graciousness and gentleness. Love can send a ray of sunshine into a darkened day, and a smile can bring warmth to a cold heart and a lonely existence. Be wide awake in all circumstances to avoid negative impressions and “clangers”. One man said. “Rule one. Clangers will not be dropped. They will be highly polished and gently lowered to the floor”. Not a bad rule! In a world which is often careless, rough and cruel, thoughtless and even downright rude, let the love of Christ breathe charm into every waking moment of your days.


Lord, help me to be gentle and thoughtful in the little things.