The phrase “I love you” has been known to be thrown around a lot! For example, your friend buys you something, “Omg I love you!”. Or when someone does something you want you would usually use the phrase “I love you” to thank them and to show your gratitude. But we usually don’t say it because we actually love them, but because they did something for us or got us something. But if we think about it for a minute, is it really love? The dictionary defines love as strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties. Usually a warm attachment between two or more people. However, as Christians we perceive love as a totally different thing.
In our world’s society, everyone is scared to be alone. When you find someone that you love in a romantic way, you find yourself being attached to that person. You enjoy the feeling he/she gives you and you usually want more which develops into a relationship. The problem in this scenario is that the love that society perceives is usually just about desire. When you find yourself liking someone, all you can think about is how they make you feel; physically or emotionally. Do you get butterflies when you think of them? Does your heart beat faster when you hear their name? You get more and more attached to the person, but not for the right reasons.
Furthermore, this leads us to another topic; marriage and dating. When you fall for someone for the wrong reasons, there is a slim chance that the relationship will last. This is a reason why our church does not support dating at a young age. Growing up, our feelings are all over the place which results into us being infatuated with many different people. Dating and infatuation stem from our desires and instincts. If we follow our desires only, then we will constantly be seeking things that satisfy us and make us happy. The problem with this perspective is that love can never grow in this selfish egotistic environment. Hence, relationships or marriages that develop from this perspective can never last since true love (Christ) is not in the midst.
Our Lord Jesus Christ showed us what true love is. Not the type of love that we have grown to see around us but the love that our God has taught us. There are many different types of love. Love among your family, friends and a significant other that God knows is perfect with you. However, the love from God is the best relationship we will have with anyone. Since the moment you and I were created, God has always loved us. His love to us is irreplaceable. There is no love like our Lord Jesus Christ’s. But, we grew up in a society that makes us believe that love is all about that one person that makes you feel ways that are unexplainable. Essentially, we have been taught that love is about selfishness and not about sacrifice. Our Lord Jesus Christ set a standard for love that is unparalleled: John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” God went through a lot just to save us from death. He gave his only son by incarnating, showing humility on Earth, healing the sick, demonstrating the way of light, loving every single person and lastly, dying for us. Christ showed us that true love is sacrifice.
Nonetheless, God also taught us on how to love others. The Bible explains to us that we should love each other because God first loved us. When you share that love with others, you’re sharing God’s love. 1 Peter 4:8 “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” The Bible also says that love is very powerful and with love, we can conquer sin. This kind of love should be shared with your family, friends, people you meet and your enemies. God always drove out hate with love. As humans it is impossible to share this love with anybody, even our significant other (when we are of that age). However, with Christ we are able to partake of this love with others. All of our relationships need to have Christ in the midst of them if we want those relationships to last.
Despite the pain, tears, and hatred in the world, God has taught us that love is really precious. That there should never be envy and hatred. That we should always put others before ourselves, which is what our Lord did. Always remember that God has open arms and that He loves each one of us and through Him we can learn to love others.
1 John 4:8
“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”