Did you ever wonder why so much has been written about love since human existence? Famous authors on this topic, among others, include philosophers, clerics, monks, preachers, leaders, artists, painters, writers, and film producers.
Just as numerous as those who write about love are the terms used to define it: feelings, sentiment, compassion, empathy, suffering, philanthropy, etc.
People are constantly searching for love, and the mixture of books and films on the topic has made their search confusing and false. The power of love has been so diluted that it is easy to substitute it with counterfeit feelings and emotions.
Have you ever heard someone say, “I would rather die than to live without…”, or I would rather die than give up…”, or “I want someone who is compatible with my feelings and the things I do.” These are a few of the ways people express their love for something or someone and impersonate deep-rooted feelings that may bring pleasure and affection, but they are not necessarily genuine love.
True love does not always fit the profile that some famous person or author has described as love. True love may not look pretty or handsome or look like your desire. True love may not always have the same common interests, or like the same activities, or have the same personality as you. In fact, interests and tastes have a way of changing over time. Will you still love them? True love will experience the flaws and inadequacies that are present in each of us. Will you still love despite human imperfections?
One of the major flaws of a counterfeit love is packaged in outward appearance. Suppose a person who is smelly, dirty, and hungry approaches you or sits next to you. How do you react? What if a person looks different than you—he or she has slanted eyes, a big nose, thick lips, wears a hijab (headscarf), speaks a different language? Perhaps you treat the person who empties your trash cans at work as if he or she were a leper, but you find it easy to speak to the person in the suit. Suppose the clerk at the grocery store is uncomfortably rude to you, an attitude that leaves much to be desired. Can you get past this and leave saying something pleasant like, “Have a great/blessed day.” The power of love will flow.
The power of genuine love rests in the fact that it is not based on outward appearance or human virtue. Throughout human existence, we have shown we are seriously lacking in this area. Moses reminded the children of Israel about their consistent disloyalty to God. (Deuteronomy 9:4-6) Despite their unfaithfulness, God expressed His loyalty to them by His everlasting love—protecting them, guiding them, feeding, and clothing them.
Genuine love is not a person. It is not a feeling (although feelings may be present), it’s not sex, it’s not an expression of “I love you” or even, “Will you marry me?”
Genuine love is the gift of God without prejudice. He views us not as we are, but on His value of mankind and what each person may become through faith in Him. True, deep-rooted love is within each heart placed there by the nature of God. First, He created us, and then He blew His breath into us (the true origin of CPR), giving us life.
We allow our minds to be filled daily with words that bring the entire family of depression and all of its relatives into our lives. Maybe we should pause and ask, who is winning the battle against evil? Love is our greatest weapon and the most powerful force against the darkness that is running rampant.
Sadly, we have downgraded love to feelings and emotions—all of which involve our senses, but only a small part of our hearts. It is time for us to focus on genuine love that has the power to overcome any challenge, malice, hatefulness, antagonistic situation, or unexpected event.