When people read 1 Corinthians 13, they try to emulate all the attributes of love. You can’t do that. Just like you can’t try to muster all the fruits of the spirit. These scriptures don’t tell you how to love, they tell you how to discern love. You can’t engineer it. If you have one attribute, but not the rest it is considered counterfeit. It’s something perfect.
In essence, love is holiness, and you can’t attain holiness without being in God. People tend to think love is a deep emotional regard or attachment to someone. Others say love is an action. Love is more of a state, or a mindset. Many people will say they worry about their kids because they love them. The Bible tells us that there is no fear in love; that, in actuality, love EXPELS fear. 1John 4:18 Not only that, but the Love Chapter also states that it always hopes, always trusts and it never fails. Hope is to have an assurance, an expectation of something good from God. You do not fear death or sickness with a loved one. You expect something good from God to overcome this because love never fails. You know that God first loves us, so he will always protect us. He is holy, he is whole, he is self-sufficient, he is all. So if love begins with him and you allow it to overtake you, you take part in him, you are guided by him and do the works he does… just as Jesus did. You persevere with difficult people, you intercede on their behalf, and you hope that God will get a hold of them like he got a hold of Paul.
When you operate out of love you also operate out of the Holy Spirit. See if you don’t have the fruits if you are operating in love. Will you not also have joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control?
You have to start with the cross. Jesus died while we were yet sinners. The perfect died for the imperfect. Even while being beaten, mocked, spit upon, whipped, flogged, and crucified, he loved us and asked God to forgive us. Do you have that kind of love? Or do you blow up if someone cuts you off? God desires us to be whole, and he wants us to catch his vision. He wants to get rid of fear and corruption, hatred and perversion. God is everything good, and we cast him aside. We go on sinning, not even believing he is good. We are afraid to seek him. His holy nature isn’t something to fear, but to embrace. He brings freedom. Run to him and let the sin and corruption be burned up by his love.