Love is a word we have really misused for a really long time. We “love” a particular kind of food, music, movie, animal and the list goes on. Then we use the very same word to describe how we feel about friends, family and our kids. That very same word we use to express how we feel about our boyfriend/girlfriend or spouse.
In the process of using this word interchangeably as we do, I feel we have inadvertently watered down the meaning. We use the word love as if it means nothing. We use the word love when really we should use the word like. Even worse we say love when the word should be lust.
I know I struggle with love. I struggle because my flesh wants to be satisfied. I struggle because I battle with selfishness and self gratification. For me it is a battle every day to crucify the flesh and love. Love as it was intended. Love as Christ loves me.
I understand that the English language sometimes has multiple meanings for the same word. I understand that for some words it depends on how it is used in the sentence. Even Merriam-Webster has 9 different definitions for the word love. One of those not even dealing with feelings but with a tennis score. And even worse part of the first definition (1a (2)) is really the definition of lust.
We wonder why people struggle with the word and struggle with the action of true love. We wonder why our divorce rate in America is so high or why kids grow up not feeling the love they should. We only need to look as far as ourselves. We are the problem. We throw the word around as if it can be interchangeable. We say we love but our actions show something completely different.
I will end this thought on love with Gods definition of love:
John 15:13 (Jesus speaking) “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friend”.
Love sacrifices, even his life if need be.
1 Corinthians 13:3-8 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profit me nothing.Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.'”