What do we mean when we say we love someone?
I’m realizing that I define love in a much different way than I often apply it in verbal expression. Having thought about it and chosen a personal definition years ago, I believe love to mean that you care enough about a person’s well-being to make sacrifices for their comfort and happiness. That you honor them by placing their needs and wants even before your own (in a healthy way, of course).
Yet, when I say that I love someone, I often mean that I care about them, admire them, treasure my relationship with them and, basically, think they’re awesome. For instance, just before grabbing my laptop to write this, I thought (as I often do) about how much I love Yahushua. And, again, as I often do, I thought about what I mean by that. Do I make sacrifices that would make Him happy? Not often, no. Do I place His wants before my own? I try to, but what does that really mean? Hmmm…
Am I loving toward my neighbor? Sometimes, yes. Sometimes, no.
Am I forgiving? I can be. I try to be, but I also hold secret grudges in my heart and mind.
Do I visit the sick? On occasion, but I seldom make a special effort to do so.
Do I encourage others? YES! I always try to offer words of encouragement to others and it’s one of my most favorite things to do.
Am I easy going? Humble and patient with others? Ummm, I’d have to give myself between a C+ and a B- there. Seems others think I’m a lot of these things, but they don’t know the secret strategies that I make in my mind to avoid people, carve them out of my life and, generally, ignore them.
Just being honest here.
So when I say that I love Yahushua, but I barely make an average effort at representing Him in my relationships with others, am I really loving Him or simply just admiring Him?
After all, imitation flatters, right?