Love does not demand its own way.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7New Living Translation (NLT)
4 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
These verses describe what is and is not love. My focus today is on the sentence – It does not demand its own way. How often do we argue with one another? An argument consists of at least two people in a disagreement. Both feel that they are right. The arguing is each one demanding they are right. Yet once you have entered an argument you have already lost even if you may be right. The other person may hear you but they are not listening to you and vice versa. This is just one example of a person demanding their own way, so I am going to keep on this topic. Say I do not agree with you. Instead of walking away or moving on to another subject, I keep persisting on you agreeing with me. I finally irritate you until you are upset and a full blown argument takes place. I might have been right but the way I handled this conversation was absolutely wrong. I was not getting the response I wanted, so I kept nagging you and insisting you agree with me. You may have had something for me to listen to but I was refusing to hear you. Now both of us are upset and nothing more than irritation, hurt feelings, and anger are left. So what was the point? I was demanding my own way; I was not speaking in love.
It is not easy when you have something to say and the other person is refusing to listen to what you have to say, but at the same time how often do we really listen to the others need? Is it just about what I want? When we take the time to listen to each other, and care about the others needs and wants as much as our own, this is just one way to show love. I have not perfected this quality but I am working on this personally. Of course since I have decided to make this change in myself I have met many challenges. I regularly find people who want nothing more than to argue. So I have had to either move the conversation to a more positive conversation, or politely end the conversation. Neither is easy to do, and takes effort. Yet I remind myself of this scripture and focus on the sentence-It does not demand its own way. I also ask myself when I feel like an argument is about to begin, if I am trying to demand my own way. I cannot control how another behaves, but I can choose how I will act or react. I hope that there is someone else this will help.
Proverbs 15:1-2 (NKJV)
15 A soft answer turns away wrath,
But a harsh word stirs up anger.
2 The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly,
But the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.