A couple weeks ago, my youth pastor asked us what love was to us. It got me thinking about what exactly is it. Is love tangible? What if you could see it? Or what would it sound like? How would you explain love to someone who claims to have never felt it?
Whether you look at it as an expression, a feeling, a choice, or you don’t believe in the “L word”, love is bigger than just a loosely said “I love you”. To me, love is a gift. You can get it, give it, have it taken away, or be the Indian giver yourself. It can sometimes be one sided. Sometimes it’s broken or lost. How God feels about us doesn’t depend on how much we love Him back. He loved us before we were existent in the thoughts of anyone on earth.
In 7th grade, my small group leader Peggy told our group something that has stuck with me all this time as I’ve tried to figure this love thing. She said “There’s a part in the movie Top Gun with Tom Cruise where the girl says ‘You complete me’. Girls, let me tell you something. No man, or anyone else for that matter, will complete you. Only God can do that.”
God created all things. Little and big. He created the glittery stars we think are so romantic. He created those moody clouds we take pictures of all the time (maybe that’s just me). He created the beach and diamonds. He created the person who created ice cream (gotta give Him big creds for that one). Y’all, He made puppies and He still looks at you and says, “I love you more than puppies and stars.” Goals, am I right?
But the truth is, is that the stars will eventually die out and the clouds will move on, but the love of our Jesus endures far beyond then. Jesus quietly loved those around Him while He left footprints on the ground, but by His actions, He might as well have screamed it from the top of a mountain. He hung on two pieces of wood before lots of people to fulfill His Father’s will and to show that He loved them more than they could ever possibly love Him back.
No man or woman can ever complete you. Humans are not capable of filling each other up all the way. We understand love. From babies, to teenagers, to adults, we all understand it. But there’s a kind of love that is sometimes so overwhelming that you go “No one could possibly ever make me feel the way He does”.
Real love isn’t just romantic. Love is giving someone a hug after a really bad day. Love is paying for someone’s food when they find out they don’t have enough money. Love is telling the Walmart greeter to have a good day. In 1 John 4:9 it says “This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we many live through Him.”
Real love is giving your all, not expecting to be getting anything back. Real love is humbling yourself before others so that they can be shown the kind of love Jesus instructed us to give. Love isn’t a religion thing. It’s a human thing. Jesus was just the one relaying the instructions. He was, after all, the best Teacher.
He loves you. More than stars or diamonds or puppies. He loves you more than your parents ever can, your husband/wife ever will, and more than you could ever hope to love Him. We, as a human race, have sinned constantly and yet He’s still standing there saying “The offer still stands. Come to Me.” If being there after constant mistakes, backlashes, frustrating comments, and sometime failures, His love still stands as strong as it did the day you were thought of. He loved you enough to hang with wounds, thick thorns in his head, and nails in his feet and hands and still think of you. If that’s not real love, then I don’t know what is.
Verse: “This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” 1 John 4:9
1 Peter 4:8
2 Corinthians 12:15 (This is said by Paul talking to the Corinthians, but it’s applicable to this real love situation)
Song: “Real Love (Live)” by Hillsong Young & Free from the album Youth Revival (2016)