The greatest gift you can give someone is your heart. Most people reading the first line will think I am talking specifically about personal relationships. And that, I feel, is where we fall short in the Kingdom and in this world.
How would you feel telling a stranger, “I love you”? If the cashier checked you out and gave you your change or receipt, could you say, thank you, I love you? What about after you had a great experience with a waitress at a restaurant and you handed them your tip, could you say thank you, I love you?
If this were to happen, you would likely be looked at as a weirdo or predator. But what if we could walk in love and show love toward all people? Would it replace hate, biasedness, and judgmental mindsets? If we walked in love as much as possible, would we wear the word love out, making the meaning of it less sentimental? Would the meaning of love eventually have equal value as hello or hey? Or would it increase your empathy and compassion towards one another the more you say it?
God tells us to love our enemies and to love our neighbors. I feel this goes beyond just saying the words. Love is an action that is demonstrated in how we treat one another. Today, we need a running start to get to love that starts with kindness, caring, and acceptance which ultimately leads to love.
God loves us from the rip no matter what our behaviors are. God just loves period. But this does not mean that there is no room for growth. It’s just like when a woman carries a child, she loves that child without knowing the child’s behavior or personality. As parents, we birth the child, and it is up to the parenting to grow and develop that child. God is no different.
When we surrender to God and believe, he deposits his love into our hearts which shows we are capable to love in the same manner God loves. While God is loving us, he is growing us and the more we operate in God’s love the more we start to act and look like God. Just like a child and its parents. God is our heavenly Father.
We do not have to go around freaking out strangers by telling them we love them because the world is not ready for that right now, however, we can show love in our words, behaviors, and acts of service towards our neighbors and loved ones. Start at home with your loved ones and eventually, it will pour out abroad. Love will eventually become a part of our character. Love is a choice just like God choose us. We may not have the exact perfect love as God, but we do have the love that is able to be genuine and pure. A love that we are capable of in this human body of ours. A love that pleases God and does not destroy. A love that does not look for recognition or a return. Love is the one language that is known throughout the universe.
How is this possible one may ask? I was taught to take 1st Corinthians 13:4-8 and replace the reference of the word love with your name, would each statement be true?
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
If you find places you are falling short, it’s okay, this is where growth comes in. Make a choice to work at love within yourself, for yourself, and start with yourself. As we must learn to love ourselves before we can love others.
Let us collectively make a choice to operate and walk in Love and pray for those who hurt and let us down. Change starts with you.
Romans 5:5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. And this hope will not lead to disappointment.