So although the title would make it appear so, I am not going to go on a rant about why I hate chick flicks (even though I do). But I will tell you the main reason I do is because they present such a false picture of love and romance. That and they are all the same, the characters just have different names. Now I am no expert on love, but here I go…
What is love? How do you even begin to answer that question? Sophocles said that love is the “one word frees us of all the weight and pain of life.” Erich Fromm said “love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence.” But these statements only leave us asking more questions about love. What are they missing that would answer the question?
Soren Kierkegaard said that Christianity is unique about love because love is required. In the New Testament only two forms of the Greek word love are used, agape and philia. Agape is a selfless, unconditional love. And Philia is a human response to something found delightful. In 1 Corinthians 13:13 Paul says, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” So if this thing called love is required of us, how do we live in it? In John 13:34-35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” So to figure out what love is we must examine how Jesus loved us.
Perhaps the most direct answer the Bible gives us as to what love is is found in 1 John 4:8. It reads, “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” The Bible tells us that God is love. So to define love we can look at the characteristics of God. He is forgiving, caring, compassionate, understanding, sacrificing, listening, correcting. Simply put love can not be found in this world. So many people are aimlessly searching and hoping. And they will never find what they are looking for. And so many Christians are not sharing a true version of love. They are trying to fake it by looking good, by trying to look good. When really in order to truly love someone we must be everything God is, and everything God called us to be. And we must be this all the time, because the Bible says that God is “the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). If God is never changing, and God is love, then our love can never change. We can’t decide to show true love one day and then not the next or we are just a liar. We only deceive ourselves to think that we really love when we live like that. Jesus laid down his life for people everyday. It did not matter where He was or what He was doing, if someone else needed something He was there. If we as Christians are not daily striving to do that how can we truly be following Jesus? Jesus never said when you feel like it love each other. He commands us to love each other (refer back to John 13:34).
John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son.” John 15:13 says, “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Love means putting other’s needs before yours. Jesus set the example by dying on a cross. Philippians 4:7-8 say, “Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.” That is the ultimate sacrifice. To love means to walk in that same sacrifice, that no matter what it cost us we are willing do it for someone else.
Love is not cuddling on a couch, finding a soul mate, making out, or any of the things the world tries to tell us it is. It can not be found in this world, no matter how hard we look. The only place to find true love is in God. And God laid down His life so that we could have it. He desires for us the best that we can have. We can not love someone unless we have that same attitude. We must desire for other people their best. We must be willing to sacrifice anything in order for them to achieve that. Love is not self promoting but rather it is a building block. So until we stop searching and start serving, we will not find true love.
until next time…