With all of the conflict, fighting and bad things going on in the world today, one tends to forget about love. The dictionary defines love like this: – a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person. – a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, as for a parent, child, or friend. I suppose that isn’t too bad. But for me, that doesn’t tell the whole story.
Real love is not reducible to a warm fuzzy feeling. It is so much more. It is an attitude, it is demonstrable, it is active and alive, with a life of its own. It is unconditional…something that we so often forget.
The Bible has the best description of love:
1Co 13:1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
1Co 13:2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
1Co 13:3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.
1Co 13:4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
1Co 13:5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
1Co 13:6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
1Co 13:7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
1Co 13:8 Love never ends.
1Co 13:13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Love is all of the best for the other. It is total disregard for the self, and total regard for others. Nothing is too good for love. It is the type of love that makes you sacrifice all, even your life, for others. This passage is such a perfect description of what Christ did for us. He endured all, and while He had prophetic powers, and total wisdom and understanding, it was only love that had Him lay down His life. And because of His love, we can be absolutely certain that love never ends, because God never ends.
In our daily walk, we don’t really do all that well with the love thing. I know I act in an unloving fashion often, even to those close to me. Yes, the standard is high, and we sometimes fail. But love ultimately cannot fail, and if we try and love in Biblical way all the time, surely we will get better at it, and with God, perfect it one day.
From the time that you read this, going forward, teach yourself what real love is from the passage above, and try to let love into your life, all the time. God’s very substance is love:
1Jn 4:7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.
1Jn 4:8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
1Jn 4:9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.
1Jn 4:10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
1Jn 4:11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
1Jn 4:12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.
Loving like God demonstrated and shared is as good as seeing God Himself. Will you love like that? Patient, forgiving, selfless? There is no greater thing you can do on this earth than to love those around you like that.