Love, we all want it, but how many of us have it?

Never before has love been used as much as today. We even have a special holiday for it where people can share their feelings with their dear ones. Yet, it seems that in this generation we are hurting more than ever.

There are many faces to to this word. The love we have for God, for family, for our friends, and the romantic feelings that we have for our spouses. Although each kind is unique, they all call to us with the promise of unconditional acceptance and support.

Love is more than a flickering emotion. Although it can produce emotion, it is an action. It involves an unwavering commitment to the happiness of others. It is selfless. If we care selflessly, we make our own thoughts and feelings subservient to our “loved ones.” It actually takes an effort. It is something we do to make others happy and fulfilled.

I know someone that rarely said this word but he actually acted it out. He went around healing the sick, feeding the hungry, comforting the mourners, giving strength to the weak and hope to the hopeless. To Him charity was more than just words. Because words don’t mean much when they are not accompanied by actions.

Thus, the supreme example of this word is God’s love. “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16). Jesus died on the cross for you and me. “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). 

God’s charity demonstrates sacrifice for the sake of others, even if others don’t have this principle. It is a choice we are commanded to exercise even in behalf of our enemies: “I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 5:44–45). If God so loved us that, even “while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son” (Rom. 5:10; Eph. 2:4–7), how much more should we love those who are actually our enemies.

So, what does this word entail? If you want to care for your spouse, be a help mate. If you want to care for your parents, honor them. If you want to care for your boss, work hard. If you want to love God, do His will. It is simply a joyful desire to put the welfare of others above our own. Charity has no place for pride and self–seeking.

The Bible teaches us, “Let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions” (1 John 3:18 NLT). If we want to experience real love in our lives, it is not enough to just feel it or say it. We should work towards respecting, giving, comforting and helping others.

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