Redefining Love

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Facing reality is sometimes the hardest part of moving forward. Sometimes the truth just hurts. It does. But rather than coddle that hurt and allow it a home, we can use it to help us look beyond and see a larger perspective.

We have some major misconceptions about love and what it truly is. Would you agree?

This effects every relationship we touch, including our children's. Before we can love our children well, we need to know what love is. I'm not talking about some emotional idea of warm fuzzies. I'm not talking feelings at all. If love was based on feelings, it would fluctuate horribly, wouldn't it?

Love is often viewed as random, uncontrolled, and emotionally based. But love is a verb, not a noun. It requires action.

Before we can love our children well, we must understand how to love God and how we are loved by God. He is our Source and without Him we will never walk out true love.

Jesus said,

"If you love me, you will obey what I command. John 14:15

John confirms this in 1 John 5:2

This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.

Our love for God is evident in our obedience to Him. We must walk out our faith in Christ.

There is no love where there is no obedience or sacrifice. We cannot love our children well without first loving God.

In Family Driven Faith, Voddie Bauchman says

Love is proved by our efforts. If I say I love God, there should be evidence in the things I do (or the way I expend my energy and effort).

If we love God, our time and resources will show this. We won't be perfect at it, but our overall lifestyle should easily reflect our heart.

Do not wait for a feeling before you act. Often, that feeling will come as a result of acting.

My challenge for you is this:

Read over 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and honestly evaluate yourself.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. t is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

When you read these verses, do not merely read them and nod. Examine yourself. Examine your heart. If this definition on what love is is true (and it is), then the opposite must also be true.

When we are not patient, we are not loving. When we are not kind, we are not loving.

Our love is shown in our actions, not necessarily expressed by our mouths or how we feel at the moment.

Do not neglect to call on the Holy Spirit because this is not something we can walk out alone. But I believe one important thing that hinders us is our own availability.

Are we making ourselves available to be counseled and moved by His Spirit?

{photo credit}

Christin

Christin is wife of 16 years to her high school sweetheart and mother to seven children. She looks for beauty in the simple and appreciates a good cup of coffee. She is learning to live everyday with joy, find gratitude in the mundane, and speak words of grace. You can find Christin writing through her days on her blog, christinslade.com.

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