"There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear." 1 John 4:18
With Valentine's being right around the corner, I have been thinking a lot about the word "love". Yes, I said it, like it or not, Valentine's really IS right around the corner. Retailers have already started to market this day and couples have started making plans on how this special day will be spent. As I was walking through Wal-Mart the other day and looking at all of the cute pink heart decorations and Valentine's Day cards, I started to really think about the true meaning of love and the amazing beauty that eliminates from that one little word.
Love is known to be a human's greatest need. We all need it. We all walk this earth with an inborn hunger to be loved and accepted. We want to feel valued by the people around us. We want to be valued for who we are and not just the outer appearance but valued for who we are deep down. We want our path in life to be honored and the struggles that we have walked through in life be noticed and accepted. None of us want the pressure of having to be perfect. That type of love is not of God, yet we tend to walk around wanting perfection from the people we "love" the most.
Perfection is just not a reality. Sure it would be nice to have the perfect family, the perfect spouse or significant other, the perfect friends, the perfect job, the perfect children.....but it just isn't a reality. If life were perfect then why would we need God? Why would we need one another? Imperfections and struggles are the very thing that bring us to our knees in worship and the very thing that humble us.
God loves us so much that He gives us the freedom of choice. Love is freedom. There is no freedom when there are shackles of expectancy around it. Who wants to be covered with criticism or nagging? Love is freedom. Love is peace. Love is unconditional. That is the type of love that God bestows upon our lives every single day, so why is it so beneath us as Christ followers to offer that type of love to others as well? Isn't that what we are called to do? To love others as He loves us?
We each have a past and we each have made mistakes in life that we are not proud of. That is why it is so important to have loving and supportive people in our lives. We need others in our lives to help us with life's struggles. To help us if something in our lives need to be corrected. Love heals, repairs, and supports. Love does not lecture, nag, or criticise. Love prays. Love accepts all. Acceptance is loving a person for all they are and all they have been through in life, whether it be good or bad. Love is accepting a person's history and a person's general makeup.
People all to often are quick to reject another person. Parents reject their children for not going to the right college or getting the right career or even marrying the "right" person in their eyes. Friends reject one another because somebody said the wrong thing or didn't wear the most stylish outfit. Marriages are ending and families are being torn apart every day because a spouse is rejecting the other because they aren't perfect or because they allow stress to step in and take over. Relationships end every single day because we simply do not know how to LOVE! Love should always replace rejection and we should always hold back from being critical towards one another.
At some point in life we all have a moment where we just need love. We want somebody to accept us for who we are and all the imperfections we come with. In order to give this type of love, we must first accept Christ's love for us and be able to love ourselves with this unconditional type of love. I have learned over the last few months that love is so precious and so fragile. It is only from God that we can truly love others the RIGHT way. The "love" word is thrown around every single day but to truly love somebody we must truly be willing to accept His love above all! If you are reading this today, I pray that you take a moment to close your eyes and just feel His love surround you and know His mercy and love are in your soul! It is a part of your makeup!
Be Blessed Today All!!!!!