Evidentially one of the most dramatic results of humankind's demise from sin is manifest in our failure to love. The breakdown of love in our world has had dramatic results. All you have to do is pick up a newspaper or watch the evening news to find the loveless reality we live in.
God has been desperately attempting to help us return to the relationship withHim and each other we were created to experience. It has not been an easy taskas love is very costly to the one loving. God was willing to sacrifice to thegreatest degree for love. Because God is love, He has been able to demonstratewhat true love is.
1 John 4:16 puts the issue of love into a thought-provoking context. Andso we know and rely on the love God has for us. Have you been wonderingabout your own failure to love? Do you become discouraged by your lack of kindheartednessto family members or co-workers? Have you ever set out specifically to love someoneand been disappointed by your poor affection for them? Perhaps the answer toyour failure to love is that you are loving within your own framework of love.
I think what made the concept of love languages from Gary Chapman so inspiringand helpful to relationships is that he was able to break down and show us ourown interpretation of love. If you are not familiar with his writings, I encourageyou to pick up one of his books. (Gary Chapman, The Five Love Languages,Moody Press, 1996). The premise of the breakthrough book for couples was thatevery individual has a specific manner (gifts, acts of service, physical touch,words of affirmation, and quality time) in which they feel most loved. Most ofus express love to our partner in the love language that speaks to us, but thatlove language may not convey our love in the way we intended. When couples beginunderstanding these small differences in the ways they love and are loved, ithelps bring more intimacy to the relationship.
In our relationship with God, I think it is mandatory that we get to the placewhere we recognize that we have no idea how to love. We must come to the endof our own petty ideas of love. We must open ourselves to a totally out-of-this-worldkind of love. We need to be open to know and rely solely on the love God hasfor us.
For most of us, our failure to love well develops because of our resistance torecognize our own inability to love. We think we know what love is when we reallydon't. If you are going to have the breakthrough you are searching for in thearea of love, let me encourage you to throw out your own conceptions of whatlove may be. Turn your eyes to Jesus and invite Him to teach you about love.Rely on His idea of love. Find in Him the entire source of love.