Prior to our wedding, my husband and I attended six weeks of pre-marriage counseling with our pastor. Pre-marriage counseling was a requirement of our church, and we happily obliged. During pre-marriage counseling sessions, our pastor shared invaluable advice, one piece being to always date each other throughout our marriage. Basically, keep things fresh and exciting, and make an effort to show your love to one another. My husband took heed, and ever since, he loves to surprise me with random tokens of love–a card, flowers or my favorite candy bar. I certainly feel the love when he gifts these sweet surprises, too.
People commonly define love as the giving of time or money or attention to a person you care about, and while those descriptors are true, love is actually much deeper. There is another, profound aspect of love, and this angle has nothing to do with attraction or gifts or time. Love comes from God, and when you know God, you know love. The reason of love comes from the Source of love itself – Jesus.
“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” (1 John 4:7-9 NIV)
We actually share our love for God through the way we love, forgive and help others. This kind of love then overflows in love for everyone we come in contact with. Living in the joy of His Word sparks radical love, and through this radical love, we are able to properly and thoughtfully love the special people in our lives. God poured love in our hearts, and He asks that we share that love, in the Name of Jesus, so that He can bless through our dutiful love. In turn, more people turn to God and understand the true meaning of love.
One of the beautiful parts of God’s love is that it is undeniable when exhibited by others. His love is unprecedented. When you are loved by others, and it feels good–sans worry or doubt–the reason is Him. He made us by the power of His love, and our lives were intended to be lived in that level of glorious love. So, when your partner or friend or family shares pure love with you, He is at the source of that love. He is at the source of my husband’s willingness to give a sweet surprise. He is at the source of the joy and affection I give our children. He is at the source of the love and grace I bestow upon the special people in my life and vice versa. With Jesus as the Source of love, not only are we able to properly love those in our lives, we are able to truly define love. Then, we are able to change the world because we know that at the very root of humankind is God’s unconditional love.
“Give thanks to the God of heaven. His love endures forever.” (Psalm 136:26 NIV)
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