“[Love] bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things…. Pursue love…” -I Corinthians 13
It often feels to me like Love is one of the strangest things going. We all want to love and to be loved so badly that it influences much of what we think, do, and say. God creates us to be in relationship with him and with others through love, and that desire he creates in us to do so is the challenging place where many of us (I know I do) spend too much effort and time getting it wrong before getting it right.
So often I am influenced by the way our culture uses skewed perversions of what love is. That “love” is all about being desirable (and more importantly, actually desired), that it is about influencing and controlling others, that being in love with someone should equal a perfectly harmonious and effortless existence… forever. Or, that “love” should come only with endless angst and effort and doing.
In my head, I sometimes get caught up in those perceptions, those beliefs. But I am so thankful that in my heart – though sometimes it is deeply buried and needs a bit of excavation or digging to expose – I don’t believe that any of those things above are true. Instead, I believe that love does exist in many forms, that God not only has created us for love but deeply desires it for us, and that love is both all around us and is waiting for us to acknowledge its presence.
That doesn’t mean that Love is always easy, but I think it does mean that there is always something of Love around us – through friends, pets, family, lovers, the glory of nature, and absolutely from the Trinity. Our invitation is to both recognize the places where it exists in our lives, and to be open and brave enough to both receive it and love back in return.
Because love can be wonderful. It can be warm and golden and sweet, like sunlight during the golden hour or fragrant honey on hot, buttered toast. Like a favorite sweater or the scent and feel of soft fur of a beloved pet.
How have you experienced Love?