Do you know what a paper trail is? Well, if you’re suspicious of possible evil, and want to protect yourself – you keep records of everything that happens. Then when the time comes, you can prove what really happened. You have records – you have a paper trail.
Paper trails can be very helpful, especially in matters of politics, economics, and business. But when it comes to love between the people of God, paper trails (or any kind of trail) is not what God would have us do.
In 1 Corinthians 13:5, when God talks about His kind of love, He says, “Love thinks no evil.” The NAS says, “Love does not take into account a wrong suffered.” Now this aspect of love is certainly a challenge, these days. As we try to protect our own interests from the interests of others, we are prone to keep record of wrongs.
The word “think” no evil, is a Greek word logizetai that actually means “to take an inventory, to estimate.” Now it can mean “to think about something,” but usually in the sense of “reckoning or calculating.” So what God is saying is that the love that comes from Him does not think about the faults of others. It does not keep a record and count the number of times that someone does something wrong. There’s no tally of evils done. There’s no paper trail of suspicion. Love just doesn’t do that.
Jim just happened to forget his mother-in-law’s birthday. So his wife got on him about it. “You never remember my mother’s birthday. In fact, I’ve been keeping track, and you’ve forgotten six important occasions this last year. You even forgot your cousin’s graduation.” Well, love doesn’t do that. Obviously Jim needs help with his forgetfulness. But keeping track of his wrongs doesn’t help – it only frustrates. Love “keeps no record of wrongs.”
Now you know the real meaning of the word. Remember – when we’re in Christ, He doesn’t keep a record of our wrongs, either. Boy, am I glad for that!