“For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son” [John 3:26, PHILLIPS].
When it comes to LOVE, there are so many ways love can be shown or interpreted. Each person has a different standard for what they believe love to be, and how it should be shown to them. Yet in order to reconcile all these different beliefs and standards, we would have to go to the author of love.
In Ephesians 5:1 [The MSG], Apostle Paul encourages us to “Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love.” It is only when we watch and do what God does through an intimate relationship with Christ, that we would be able to reconcile these varying standards & beliefs and get it right when it comes to love. After all, GOD IS LOVE.
God’s love towards us is not “cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us” [Ephesians 5:2a, The MSG]. According to human standards, this kind of love is not realistic, because it leaves you open and vulnerable for others to take advantage of you. After all doesn’t the Bible also say “guard your heart with all diligence for out of it flows the issues of life” [Proverbs 4:23]. As Christians, we ought to understand that this life we have chosen is a life of LOVE and sometimes choosing the way of love, leads to being taken advantage of or being hurt, just like Jesus was. Yet, if we are being changed into the image of Christ day by day, from glory to glory, then our behaviors, thoughts, and attitudes should reflect His. Even with the realities of human frailties, Apostle Paul gives us no room for excuses but says, “Love like that” [Ephesians 5:2b, The MSG].
What does “Love like that” consist of, we may ask? 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a [AMP] shows us that, “Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]”.
No matter what circumstances, situations or people you encounter on this earth, choose the “love” way. Make it your personal motto, to “love like that”, even when it hurts because that is the way of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.