Love

For a long time I have battled a conundrum about love that I finally got an amazing answer to! I will start by explaining that since I was young I have struggled to understand how love works. My mom would back this up, but my original picture of love was as a bucket and so I became worried as a child that if I gave too much love away and didn’t get enough back I may “run out” of love. This was a serious problem for me. Now I love and have loved plenty of people in my life, but I’ve still always sought a better representation and one that makes more logical sense to me throughout life. Many things have been better expressions, but I had yet to find the one that fit all the characteristics of love and was able to express the fact that love not only doesn’t disappear, but can grow. For love originates within you, rather than being an external figure that drains if not returned. Indeed you can love and not have love returned and still be full of love! So here is what I believe. First, if wisdom is what you seek, ask and the Lord is faithful to answer, but you will need patience and certainly a willingness to have your mind and thoughts expanded beyond what you could ever think or imagine!
So, I believe love is like the umbrella to all other emotions. You can not have compassion, kindness, gentleness, mercy, grace, forgiveness, or even anger without first having and understanding love. When I first arrived in the Philippines I was met with different circumstances than what I had originally thought I would be coming in to, but over time I have learned to love these folks I am staying with as well as the people I am working with and that has grown slowly. Also, my love for family and friends from home has grown stronger while I have been away. I was still left thinking how is it always possible to love someone more when you thought you loved them as much as you could yesterday or an hour ago, or even a minute ago? Following is the example I believe the Lord opened my eyes to see and I feel compelled to share it with everyone with which I am able.
Love is a seed planted in your heart. Now as anyone with moderate knowledge of seeds will know. A seed must be watched after, nurtured, watered, fertilized(fed), and in general protected and encouraged to grow. It is not meant simply to be placed in a hole in the ground and left to be, if you intend for it to grow well. So, once planted in your heart it is up to you how it progresses. The seed of love grows into a tree of love if properly taken care of. As for how trees grow, in order for a tree to be able to be strong and withstand the winds that may come to blow it down, and the trials of life that it will need to put up with it must have a good root system. In general the roots should be underground at least as large as the canopy of branches overhead to maintain the balance needed to keep the tree standing strong and tall. I believe that Jesus gives us everything we need to grow a great root system so we can have a strong foundation with the seed we have been given. He continues to provide all the love we could possibly need to keep that tree standing strong and tall. As for the branches I believe those grow the fruit of the spirit and allow us to minister to others. For those that need a refresher that would be patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. I believe love is the trunk or body of the tree without which you can do nothing to help others. If you have love you can trust in our Lord Jesus which leads us to have a permanent peace within which steadies the roots of our tree so that they are unwavering and stand firm through every storm. With love and peace you can grow many branches which allows you to help others without any anxiety of harming yourself because you are sure and have peace to stand firm. The ability to assist others and being sure of our own love and peace leads to complete joy as we fulfill our God given ability to love others as we were first loved!
I believe love is the gift we were given from God to have the closest grasp on understanding infinity possible. Just as a tree continues to grow for the duration of it’s life, our love can continue to grow as long as we are alive and therefore there is no limitation to how much we are able to give or receive love. The more we root our tree in Christ’s unfailing love, the broader our branches can grow and stretch to help touch even more lives. To infinite ends and with boundless measures we can love each other, without fear of running out because it is an ever increasing supply not a dwindling measure!
As for our branches I do not believe we can truly have compassion for another if we do not have a heart of love. We cannot offer mercy and grace if we do not come from a heart of love and we have no reason to exercise self-control except for the love of someone else. All of these things stem from the fact that we were first able to be loved by Jesus. The example of love in action is what shows us how love is to behave and what it looks like. We simply cannot come to these emotions if we were stemming from a place of apathy. So, I thank Jesus for coming and showing us what pure, true love looks like because examples are easier to follow than mere words on a page or rules in a book! I also thank Him for giving each of us a seed to grow in our own hearts as well as all that is needed to cultivate it, free of charge!
You need not ascribe to the same beliefs as I have explained here, but for me the Lord has made it clear how I can logically answer my questions that burned steadily in my mind about this thing called love! The problem is resolved for me how it is possible to love more tomorrow than I can today, because I will never reach a maximum in growth of love! Another wave of peace for this ever inquisitive mind, with another question answered! I hope each of you can rest in His abiding love today!

Categories: Philippines | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Love

  1. Valerie Schuler

    His name is Jesus! He has answered your question of long ago. Beautifully written. Thank you for sharing. Mom-Mom and I enjoyed it. ❤ 🙂

    Like

  2. Connie Morgan

    This was beautiful. In addition to fulfilling your mission there it looks like you are beginning a ministry with your thoughts and words shared here with others. This and other recent writings show your continued growth in Christ. You should consider putting these writings together and get them published. Your words could be a blessing to many.
    I pray you are doing better since the storm had cleared. Continued blessings for you as you continue your mission and ministry there.
    Love you. Aunt Connie.

    Liked by 1 person

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