It’s such a simple, yet loaded word.
We use it as adverb to things we like, to things we really love, to express affection, to express attachment. It’s a verb, and a proper noun, and sometimes, it’s a whisper.
I remember writing an essay on love when I was 16 or so. It was for my English Creative Writing class. Much of what I wrote has been forgotten, but I DO remember writing this: Love can only be understood once we come to know the ONE who created and IS Love. And, this is still my belief.
I think, above all, love is a verb. Scripture says that no man has greater love than He who lays down his life for his friends. Loving people you love is easy. Loving people who do not love you in return — that’s something entirely different. Yet, this is the example we see time-after-time when we look at Jesus. He not only laid down His life for his friends, but for his enemies.
I think this is the thing that still amazes me most about LOVE (whether it’s in friendships, family relationships, or romantic relationships): the fact that love can never be EARNED. Love, by definition, can only be given or received, it cannot be taken. Love and grace go hand-in-hand, in my opinion. Grace is unmerited, undeserved favour. In other words, nothing can be done to earn grace — it’s a gift.
One of my favourite musicals still is Moulin Rouge, and of course the much-quoted words: “the greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love, and be loved in return.”
I think, when we choose to love, or to be loved, we automatically open ourselves up to vulnerability. You are immediately connected, and involved, on a deeper emotional, spiritual, and certainly more personal level. And, that, in itself, is the joy of relationships — to know that you are connected to someone: to share in their happiness to support them in their sorrow, to laugh and to cry and to pray, and to know that just as you are connected to them (and ULTIMATELY to God) they are connected to you. I am of the opinion that every relationship, on some level, is made up of discipleship.
Proverbs 17 says that iron sharpens iron and friends shape one another, and this is certainly true of all relationships.
In other related news, I’m happy to announce that I’ve dated the amazing Tobie Kolver for a full three days.
The relevance of this announcement might seem a little hazy, so allow me to fill you in! If you’ve read some of my earlier blogs, you’d know that relationships, to me, is a pretty serious thing.
When Tobie and I first became friends, it was after Holy Spirit’s instigation. And, after spending a lot of time in prayer, we decided that we should say yes to love.
To be honest, I’m kind of nervous — this is all new to me, to both of us actually. I realised that relationships is one part buying a boat, and nine parts navigating the high seas. However, we are working at this together in partnership with God.
And to end off this blog post on an entirely un-uoversaved theme: the song my boyfriend played to my on our second “official” date.
My prayer for each of you is that you might have the courage to love and to be loved. May you come to know Jesus, Father, and Holy Spirit — the PERSONA of Love. May you continuously be amazed God’s limitless ability to love. May you have love-encounters with your family and friends, and even strangers, because random acts of kindness are the greatest expression of a love-filled heart.
And, for those of you still looking for your “diamond”, feel free to contact me with questions (my contact details are on the Bio-page) and browse through my earlier posts about relationships.