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Summary: When we were children, many of used to pick a flower and then pluck its petals saying "She loves me, she loves me not." Some of the petals were "love me" petals, and the rest were "love me nots". What "love me nots" do we find in I Corinthians 13?

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A high School senior was asking his father's advice on how to woo the girl of his dreams. And his dad said "Well son, when you take her out for pizza tonight and you're sitting across the table from her, take her hand in yours gaze longingly into her eyes and softly say 'Wow, you have a face that would make time stand still.'"

That night, when the boy took the girl out to eat, he sat down across the table from her, took her hand in his, gazed into her eyes. But he was nervous. His hands were shaking and he couldn’t quite remember exactly what his father told him to say. Then suddenly he smiled and said "Whoa babe, you've got a face that would stop a clock."

Somehow I don’t think that line was going to work on her.

He was trying to follow his father’s advice.

He was trying to tell her “I love you”

But that’s not what she’d heard.

(I took a daisy and walked down into the audience, plucking petals from the flower as I said)

When we were children, many of us would take flowers and pluck the petals as we recited

“She loves me… she loves me not”.

“She loves me… she loves me not”.

“She loves me… she loves me not”.

Hoping that the last petal would tell us “she loves me”.

Some of the petals were “love me” petals.

And the rest were “love me nots”.

Last week we talked about the “Love me” petals of the flower of love.

This week, we’re going to look at the “Love me nots”.

There are phrases in I Corinthians 13 that are “love me nots”.

They are phrases describe actions and attitudes - that when we see them –say to us

“This is not love”.

“That’s not what love looks like!

(These are “love me nots”)

There are about 8 “love me nots” listed in I Corinthians 13:

envy,

boasting

pride

rudeness

self-seeking,

being easily angered,

keeping record of wrongs.

and delighting in evil.

When we have these attitudes and behaviors in our lives we’re not loving like we should.

Now, that doesn’t mean you don’t WANT to love.

We may want to follow our FATHER’S advice on how to love.

But unless we master these attitudes in our lives the world isn’t going to hear “God Loves Me.” They’ll hear “He Loves me not.”

So how do I recognize the “love me nots”?

Well some of them show up in how I view myself.

A person who’s covered with “love me nots” is boastful, proud and self-seeking.

(For the reader of this sermon, I took the liberty of grouping these “negative” attributes under specific headings rather than dealing with them in the order in which they’re found in the text)

These people are all wrapped up themselves – they tend to think of themselves 1st.

And frankly, that’s how most of us are naturally anyway.

ILLUS: Dennis Waitley wrote a book called “Empires of the Mind.” In that book, he says that there are approximately 450,000 words in the English language. Four hundred and fifty thousand words! BUT 80% of our conversations use only 400 words. And the most commonly used words in those conversations are. . . "I," "Me," "My," and "Mine."


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