Throughout history, humans have sought to describe this four-letter word through poetry, songs, cards, and gestures. Through the centuries, though, we've been unable to explain or attain the real meaning of this need we all long for.
How would you describe this phenomenon? Is it being in love with someone? Is it being married to someone, or in some type of family relationship with another person as love is for our parents, our children, our extended family? Is love the giving and receiving of gifts? Is love a feeling or a state of being? Is it simply an emotion?
Remember the Bee Gees song from the 70's, How Deep Is Your Love?
How we define love reveals much about our understanding of true love.
Feelings come and go, but real love never leaves.
And now, these three remain...
But the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)
This verse hangs in my kitchen. It reminds me that love never walks away. Love stays put. Love remains faithful.
Real love is the heart of God. It's not of us. We did not invent love. God created us in His image, and the heart of His image is love.
God's love is deep.
God's love is unconditional.
God's love is eternal.
God's love is revealed through death and sacrifice.
God loved us so much He deemed us worth dying for.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son... (John 3:16)
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13, ESV).
True love is not bouncing around from relationship to relationship until you find the "right one." It's not about having someone to exchange gifts with on Valentine's Day, Christmas, and birthdays. It's not about holding hands, snuggling, kissing, and spending every waking moment thinking about another human being. Though these things are fun, they are usually based solely on emotion.
The lyrics from the Bee Gees song in 1977, How Deep Is Your Love, is in stark contrast to the lyrics of How Deep the Father's Love by Stuart Townend (see below). The Bee Gees' lyrics were written from a shallowness of human attraction, where Townsend exposes the sacredness of love from the depth of the soul where God's love is rooted.
Until we know God, we will never know love like He means for us to - spiritually, physically, mentally, and emotionally. For God is love. He is the essence of true, eternal, unconditional, unwavering love to which no other love can compare. Once we've experienced and are grounded in the love of the Father, then all other acts of love will be an extension of God's heart, flowing straight from the Source, as God ordained it.
Pure, holy, God-glorifying, inexpressible love.
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God, because God is love (1 John 4:7-8, NIV).
Meditate on the lyrics below of How Deep the Father's Love as you thank God for creating us with the capacity to love as He loves us.
Listen to Selah 's rendition on YouTube.