Understanding Love

By Ronnie Wendt

Love is the central theme of self-help books, articles, songs, television shows and talk shows, but what is it really? In its simplest terms, it is something everyone wants and everyone needs, but in today’s “love the one you are with” culture it often remains a mystery. 

The good news is that love is something we’ve had all along. God loves us with an everlasting love, and if we walk according to God’s commandments and believe in Him, His love is ours and something we can share with others.

The first step toward understanding love is to understand the love God has for us. As the Apostle John writes for us in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

The magnitude of this passage cannot be underestimated. God loved us so much that He gave us his Son to take on the weight of our sins so that we could be free and share everlasting life with Him. No matter what challenges come our way, no matter how much we sin, no matter how much pain or shame burns in our hearts, and no matter how alone we seem to be, we are never truly alone: God cares for us with a deep, passionate, and everlasting love. 

But that’s not all love is. Love is also something Jesus commanded us to do. Jesus said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  There is no commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:30-31).

We are called to make love a part of every relationship we have, from our relationship with God to the relationships we have with our families, our friends, our coworkers, and beyond. But what is it really? Fortunately for us, the apostle Paul provides a beautiful explanation of what love is in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 when he writes, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

Do you struggle to understand love? Just Between Us wants to help you on your journey, so we have put together a group of articles about love to further your understanding of God’s love for us, and His call for us to love others. Spend an hour or two checking these articles out and watch your understanding of God’s love blossom and grow!

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