Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘#valentinesday’

The day of love has arrived … so says our calendar.

Flowers, chocolates, lingerie, jewellery, cards and more are purchased as declarations of our love. Dinner reservations (or home deliveries) are made, candles are lit, chilled drinks poured into stemmed glasses … all to show and celebrate love for someone close to our hearts.

I’m kinda lucky, because my special guy got me freshly fallen snow … could there be a better Valentine’s gift?

The following three verses about love are probably the most frequently quoted love verses in the Bible.

1 Corinthians 13:13
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Matthew 22:37-39
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

John 13:34-35
A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you also must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another.”

The first, written by Paul to the Corinth church. He is instructing the believers in this community on what is important in how to live as followers of Christ.

The second are from the lips of Jesus. He reminds us that we are first to love God, then others. It is through our love of God that we have the capacity to love each other.

The third were the words of Jesus on the night before his death … after the foot washing, after Judas left the room. These were his closest followers, who would build his church on the foundation of these words.

The thing is the word love in each and every use in these verses, is the Greek word agape.

agape is the love to die for …

more specifically,

it’s the love that would die for you

Agape love is unconditional, self-sacrificing, never-ending. It is the highest form of love, the most difficult love to give, the most innately sought. As humans, I believe we were created longing for that love … it is in our DNA to seek it … for it is how our Creator-Father loves us.

Agape love costs nothing, and everything.

It takes no time, yet all of our time.

It requires that we just be ourselves, yet, in our own strength we cannot love like that.

It is the sum total of the reason for the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus … for his Father (He) loved the world so much that he gave so that we would live (John 3:16).

Agape love is to love as does not come natural for us, as humans, for it requires that we say and do things that we do not want to … because someone else needs to receive … and their need, seen through the eyes and heart of agape love (God’s eyes and heart) trump our own.

As we declare our love for those around us, today, may our words and deeds be in line with the unconditional, self-sacrificing, never-ending love that God has modelled for us.

love, as I have loved you

Read Full Post »

Cinnamon hearts, Hallmark cards, heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, flowers priced double (triple) what they will be in a week … the consumable expressions of love in our society.

If they are consumable, they don’t last … so what are the lasting expressions of love?

I look at my ‘ring finger’ on which is my gold wedding ring sits. Though it is not my original wedding ring, it does symbolize the vows we took, the promises made thirty plus years ago.

If he were to die ahead of me (which is not my plan), it would provide a constant reminder of the love we shared for each other … it does that now while we are both still alive and well … well, most days.

The Bible speaks of an expression of love that lasts into eternity.

“Greater love has no one than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13). This is a verse which tells of the expression of love from Jesus, through the willing sacrifice of his life on the cross. It is also the model of love for us all.

Jesus’ expression of love for us is the example of the Golden Rule,

Do to others as you would have them do to you (Luke 6:31).

And we read it, and we quote it, and we post it on social media … like it’s easy!

It’s not easy!!

When Jesus went to the cross, as the ultimate and most everlasting expression of love he did so for ALL people!

He did so for :

  • his mother
  • his disciples
  • for the sweet church lady
  • for the child with special needs
  • for the man who gave wealth to care for the homeless

But he also gave his life for :

  • the Jewish leaders
  • Pontius Pilate
  • Adolf Hitler
  • the addict who just stole a purse to buy more drugs
  • the man convicted of child abuse

I struggle to even write that Jesus gave his life for … these people. For I struggle to see them as worthy of such love. And that is where the lesson of love rests, for me and you. The love of God is greater, goes farther, reaches lower all to reconcile, to pardon, to redeem the vilest of us all ..

me … with my hard heart (and matching hard head), my selfishness (opposed to his selflessness), my judgemental attitude.

God gave his life for me … even if I choose to not receive his gift of love, even if I choose to not be transformed by his love … he gave anyway.

The love of God is the greatest, most lasting expression of love.

Read Full Post »

Love Leads Us Home

“The things that we love tell us what we are.” So said St. Thomas Aquinas.

If that is true, what are we? what am I?

I love my God, my hubby, my kids, my family. I also love my Wonderdog, my job, teens, snow, Americanos, wit, math, writing and creating. So, what does that tell about me? Other than I use love in a variety of ways.

Recently, while watching a truly trashy, useless, hilarious comedy, I heard these words:

“Sometimes you love someone just because they feel like home”
(Bridget Jones)

Maybe, such simple words actually do speak to the truth of love. Whether it is romantic love (like with my hubby), parental love (with my kids), intellectual love (math), visual love (snow) or palatable (coffee) …

all of these different loves are both comfortable … and complicated.

Sometimes they make our heart soar, and sometimes they leave us with heartburn.

But, they are all loves that keep us coming back for more, that have created within us pathways back … like coming home at the end of the day.

They tell us what what we are through our need, our reliance and our daily choosing of them. They lead us home, they are our home.


Read Full Post »

img-thing

Love is in the air …

in the kindergarten classes,

in the stores,

and all over Amazon.

But what is love? Can it be created? Can it be purchased? Sold?

It’s Greek to me!

No, seriously. The Greeks, in their word wisdom, understood that love is too vast for just one meaning. So they gave it numerous sub titles.

There are four main, distinct words for love:

  • Agape
  • Eros
  • Philia
  • Storge

Storge can often be used interchangeably with affection. It is a love that is not a visual love, but is used often in familial relationships.

Philia is brotherly love, thus the origin of Philadelphia’s name, which is known as the city of brotherly love! It is a love for equals, friendship, caring.

Eros … the origin of the word erotic, is about the physical, intimate, sexual part of love.

Agape is selfless love. Love that is given, with no expectation that it will ever be reciprocated. Thomas Acquinas is said to have explained that agape love is “to will the good of another.”

Four definitions, four separate meanings, encapsulated by one, four-letter word

love

Today is known for it’s focus on love, yet love is not reserved for just one day, any more than love has only one meaning.

To celebrate love is to celebrate all that we love.

It is to celebrate those who we share affection for and with. The family members who give us life, and make life worth living.

It is the friends who we look at, eye to eye, heart to heart. The ones we laugh and cry with. The ones we call, email and text first when we are deliriously happy, or in the depths of despair.

It is the ones whose mind, soul and body seem like an appendage of our own. The ones who we reach for in the dark of night and the light of day.

It is the one, the only one, who created, defined and proved his love for us … yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Happy Valentines Day … every day.

Read Full Post »

Becoming the Oil and the Wine

Becoming the oil and wine in today's society

I love the Psalms

Connecting daily with God through the Psalms

Memoir of Me

Out of the abundance of my heart ,I write❤️

My Pastoral Ponderings

Pondering my way through God's beloved world

itsawonderfilledlife

looking for wonder in everyday life

What Are You Thinking?

Theology is a conversation, and you're invited.

Sealed in Christ

Sixth Seal Ministries

Amazing Tangled Grace

A blog about my spiritual journey in the Lord Jesus Christ.

FisherofMen

Giving a unique view and input on information to help individuals establish a concrete perspective on terms, words, topics and the world around them.

Following the Son

One man's spiritual journey

Fortnite Fatherhood

A father's digital age journey with his family and his faith

Raise Them Up

Parenting with Purpose

Frijdom

encouraging space to think deeply