How do we communicate love? Is it the shop version that will soon be displayed everywhere - red balloons, soppy cards, teddy bears, flowers and chocolates or is there more to love than a once a year Valentines Day emotion?
God displayed love for us in such a unique way that it can be hard for us to get our heads round it.He gave His best, His only Son, sacrificed his life, and His blood paid the price that you and I may live free. Ultimate love. The love that lays down life for another. The love that puts others needs before our own, the love that is generous and kind, long suffering and patient; is not proud or rude and does not boast.
Gods love is a tough act to follow but that doesn't mean we can dismiss it as impossible. I can't write about love without thinking of my husband, my love, my heart, the person who knows me better than anyone else, even myself at times but has it always been that way? No! When I think back to the early days with Gavin, I know I loved him, but not the way I do now. After 13 years of marriage our love has grown, it's something that keeps getting deeper and deeper, there is no limit to its depths. The things that bothered me in those early months and years of marriage are insignificant, the arguments (and we had some crazy stupid ones!) don't even matter anymore because love wins. Always.
I believe that's the key. Love always wins. That if you really love someone then you will work above and beyond circumstances and situations to make it right. You will forgive when you want to hate, you will help, you will pray, you will serve, you will give. You will do what ever it takes. We may not be asked to give our lives as Jesus did when He died on a cross but we are asked to give our lives, give our heart over to Him and allow Him to take control.
It's not easy, some battles are harder than others, but in putting Him first in our lives communicating love to people around us becomes second nature. Something that even without realising we are displaying through our actions and our words. When Jesus is front and centre on all we do, when He is in the control room directing everything else then we cannot help but produce fruit. Fruit described in Galatians as gentleness, patience, joy, peace, faithfulness, goodness, kindness and self control; fruit that continues to grow and develop the more we display it.
Communicating real love effectively is something we can all get better at. In
our own homes, with our work friends, our neighbours, in our churches and with strangers we meet on the street. Love wins. When we love instead of hate people notice because it is not the "norm", when we give instead of take, people may question our motive but if our hearts are right then those actions will speak. Those actions will speak much louder than any Valentine card, teddy bear or chocolates because people have had enough of the nonsense, the hype and the emotional kind of love. People want authenticity, real people full of integrity to love them.
Jesus was perfect but our love is not, it's not a fairytale, just ask my husband! But real love pushes through the difficulties and makes a way where there seems to be no way. Real love admits when mistakes have been made and does its best to fix it or at least make it better.
Love won on the cross, love conquered death and we get to live victorious and free because of Jesus' sacrifice. Our love can win, our love can conquer, our love can set people free if we are willing to follow Jesus example and communicate real love, in all circumstances, in all that we say and do. Love Wins.