Sunday, February 14, 2010

What's the Real Love?

Being Valentines Day, I am naturally going to do a post on the topic of love.  To begin with....

What is love?
Love is one of those puzzling things that has everyone in it's control.  In the novels, it kills the girls, drives the men to insanity.  In real life, it pulls a family together, unites two hearts as one, draws people to their Creator, helps show compassion, and much more!  Love is powerful!

Definition of Love:
 Worlds common Definition:
"A general expression of positive sentiment (a stronger form of like), love is commonly contrasted with hate (or neutral apathy); as a less sexual and more emotionally intimate form of romantic attachment, love is commonly contrasted with lust; and as an interpersonal relationship with romantic overtones, love is commonly contrasted with friendship, although other definitions of the word love may be applied to close friendships in certain contexts."*

God's Definition:
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, 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, and always perseveres." (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)  Two terms used frequently in the bible are Agape and Phileo. 

Agape love is "charitable, selfless, altruistic, and unconditional.  It is a parental love, seen as creating goodness in the world; it is the way God is seen to love humanity, and it is seen as the kind of love that Christians aspire to have for one another. *

Phileo love is a human response to something that is found to be delightful. Also known as "brotherly love."*

(Interesting side note:  Two other words used for love in the Greek language were eros (sexual love) and storge (child-to-parent love) and neither of these were ever used in the New Testament) *

The Science on "Love"?
As many know....the sex drive is strong.  Let's take a quick look at animals.  I have heard a story of a ram that was in a penned one evening with about 60 ewes all in heat (I believe they had all been taken in with hormones) and that ram serviced nearly ever one of those 60 ewes but was found dead in the morning.  That sex drive had driven him to his death.  Have you ever seen a buck cross the street right in front of you?  They rarely stop and look to see what's on the road, they just dash across the road in hot pursuit of that doe in estrus. 

Go to humans....the sex drive is strong here too.  I've seen families broken because of that drive.  A individual sees someone that is more attractive to them and heads for them leaving the family behind.  We've all seen it.  We all know it's wrong....but it keeps happening. 

Now you are probably wondering....what on earth does the sex drive have to do with love?  Well.....guess what?!  Too many people mix this drive up with love.  Including scientits.  In fact...these scientists say they've got it all figured out.  They say it's all chemical. 

Attachment comes from Oxytocin and Vassopressin.  Lust comes from Testosterone and Estrogen.  Attraction (which includes loss of sleep and appetite, increased heart rate, and other physical side effects are caused by Dopomine, Norepinephrine, Serotonin, and Nerve Growth.* 

Can you believe it?  I mean they've got it all figured out!  Just like the Big's just happens.  We just ARE this way.  True.  But not in the way they think.

The True Origin of Love:
As Christians we know where love comes from.  We love Him, because He first loved us.(1 John 4:19) God created us to be a friend to Him, to worship Him, ultimately, to love Him.  He is full of love and since He created us in His image...we have the amazing ability to love, be loved and desire love.  It's not a chemical basis, it's God-based.  We love because God created us with that ability.  We desire love because God created us that way.

The Greatest Love:
"For 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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." (John 3:16-17) 

God showed His love first by creating us!  Without His love, we wouldn't even be here.  Then He showed His wonderous saving love by sending his beloved Son to this evil world to die in our stead.  What love!  What beautiful, pure love!

I do hope that everyone that reads this feels loved today.  I most certainly do.  I have a Wonderful God, an amazing family, and great friends.  I'm sure some of you may not feel the love of family and friends (and for that, I am very sorry) yet you will always have God there.  Praise His Holy name!

In Christ,



Jenna said...

What a beautiful post, my friend!

This Valentines day I'm focusing on the REAL love of my life - Jesus Christ.

I have a WONDERFUL God, AMAZING family, and YOU for a FANTASTIC friend! I am loved AND blessed:)

Have a blessed day - we'll talk soon!

Jenna said...

Wonderful explanation of love, Bethany! Thank you for sharing! :)

Your Sister In Christ,

The Myers Family said...

Wow...that was good. How was your valentines day? I hope you all liked your treats!

See you tomorrow!!!

The Myers'~

Joshua said...

Great post Bethany. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this important subject. True loves comes from God Himself, while the greatest love was shown on the cross. Amen!

In Christ,
Joshua :)