Thoughts on Love

Posted: February 24, 2011 in Christianity, Love, Thoughts

I have been giving a lot of thought lately to love.  What is it?  How do we show it?  How do we know we have it? Why do we seek it? Really, all of this boils down to my first question – WHAT is love?

There are so many different definitions of what love is.  For instance, Bing DICTIONARY has these definitions of what love is:

Verb: 1.transitive and intransitive verb feel tender affection for somebody: to feel tender affection for somebody such as a close relative or friend, or for something such as a place, an ideal, or an animal;  2.transitive and intransitive verb feel desire for somebody: to feel romantic and sexual desire and longing for somebody;  3. transitive verb like something very much: to like something, or like doing, something very much;  “I love watching old movies on TV.” 4. transitive verb show kindness to somebody: to feel and show kindness and charity to somebody;  “love your enemies”; 5. transitive verb have sex with somebody: to have sexual intercourse with somebody (dated)

So Love is a verb – it is an action.  It is something we DO.  Now, based on the above definitions, it almost seems like it’s more of a feeling we act on, and less of something we should just do.  Let’s see what else Bing DICTIONARY has to say about love.

Noun: 1. passionate attraction and desire: a passionate feeling of romantic desire and sexual attraction;  2. very strong affection: an intense feeling of tender affection and compassion; “Young children need unconditional love.” 3. romantic affair: a romantic affair, possibly sexual; 4. somebody much loved: somebody who is loved romantically or sexually; “He was her first real love.” 5. strong liking: a strong liking for or pleasure gained from something “his love of music”  6. something eliciting enthusiasm: something that elicits deep interest and enthusiasm in somebody “Music was his greatest love but he also liked ballet.”

Both the noun and the verb, according to Bing DICTIONARY talk about feeling and mostly dwell on the feeling elicited, as well as sexual or romantic feelings and actions.  But is this what love is?  If so, then love is shallow and fleeting.  What is the point of loving, if you can fall in and out of love so easily?  It hardly seems worth it.
A former pastor of mine defined love as, “Doing what is best for another.”  I really like this definition because this is something that seems tangible to me.  Sexual or romantic love is temporary – there are going to be times when I don’t “feel” love.  But there is never a time when I cannot do what is best for someone else – whether it be my husband, my children, my friends, or anyone else.
Jesus was an example of the ultimate love.  He gave His life for us.  He asked God to keep Him from having to do so, if it was His will (Matthew 26:39).  But He did not fight it – He gave His life willingly.  He submitted to God and humbled Himself, and died for you and for me (Philippians 2:8). He didn’t have to.  He is God – with all the rights and powers of God.  He could have torn Himself off of that cross.  Instead, He did what was best for us – He died.  The good news is, He did not stay dead.  He rose again – there are many witnesses who saw Him after He arose.  Now, He is in heaven, again doing what is best for us – preparing a place for us.
I want to have a love like His.  I want to do what is best for those around me.  I often fail at it, but God is faithful and He uses those failures to do a good work in the lives of those who love Him and serve Him.  What about you?  Do you desire this love?  Do you desire to accept this gift that God offers – His love and salvation?  You can.  All you need to do is ask Him.  He’s waiting for you – won’t you accept Him today?
Until Next Time!

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