18th April 2020

Love is…

“We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because…the love all of you have for one another is increasing.”
2 Thessalonians 1:3 (NIV)

Love is a verb and as we know a verb is a doing or action word. The idea for this reflection came from a newspaper article I read about a bestselling author, Jane Green, talking about the origin of her novel The Love Verb. I confess I have not read the book (or any of her novels) but one of the salient points she makes in her interview is that “namely love is a verb; that it isn’t enough to tell the people we love that we love them, but that real love requires acts of love… I learned that love is in the doing, not in the saying. I learned that love requires effort.”

Well, how true that is and it is interesting to hear such a confession from a world renowned, bestselling author because some people may well listen to a famous person alive today. Of course what she says is a 2020 generational take on what was said (and done) two thousand years ago – I wonder if the author knows much about The One who made the ultimate act of love?

As Christians we try to live by God’s perfect law of love, i.e.: first to love God and then to love others as we love ourselves (Luke 10:27) – that certainly takes action. In fact the thought that love is only in the saying and does not require effort is naïve and childish. Generally speaking it’s probably fair to say that people do perform acts of love, especially towards their loved ones, though such acts often have limitations or conditions attached.

What does the Bible say about love? If you are familiar with the Bible you will be way ahead of the script now. Here is what it says: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour 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. Love never fails…” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8). That’s divine instruction.

The Bible tells us what love is and thanks to God that it does. Jesus performed the ultimate act of sacrificial love laying down his life for all humanity. This was done because “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” (John 3:16). Now, that is action. That’s love!

Prayer
Heavenly Father, we give humble and grateful thanks that you are a God of love. Help us to live as you have commanded us to do and to live lives of love. We pray in Jesus’ name.
Amen

Study by Kevin Harris
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About the Author:
Kevin Harris attends the Watford Congregation of Grace Communion International in the UK.

Local Congregation:
Gracecom Watford
St. Peter’s Church
61 Westfield Avenue
Watford, Herts.
WD24 7HF

Meeting Time:
Saturday 11AM

Local Congregational Contact:
George Henderson
Phone: 01923-855570
Email: watford@gracecom.church

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