More than likely, you have heard about Twitter, the online social network or community. Since I am on Twitter, I decided to get a little feedback from my Twitter friends and asked them this question…
What is the essence or meaning of love to you?
I received some awesome answers. Because Twitter limits responses to 140 characters, these are short responses…
* karenrobbins said, “Love: emotion that sends adrenaline soaring and brings tears of joy with tenderness when it is returned unconditionally.”
* Hetty4Christ quoted C. S. Lewis, “God will look to every soul like its first love because He IS its first love.”
* Pepperfire said, “Love is the meaning of life. Without it, we are naught but a bunch of self-centered egos trying to kill each other.”
* Molly_Mac said, “I always go back to 1 Corinthians 13:4, Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous…can’t improve on that one!”
* pamelareilly had two responses, “Love is being willing to do EVERYTHING biologically necessary while your partner has two broken arms. Been there. Done that…Love is my husband’s willingness to make dinner, chauffeur the kids, clean house, massage my neck, and be my rock while I write.”
* rachaelmphillips (married for 34 years) said, “My husband Steve demonstrates love’s essence. Like Jesus, he celebrates the good in me, forgives my bad, & shelters me in His strong arms.
* PPureIndugence had two responses, “To love and be loved in return is the greatest gift God has given. He loves unconditionally and asks us to do the same. Seems this is a challenge for man. We tend to love but want to change others. Been guilty of this myself…In Ps. 107 God speaks of his “Unfailing Love” 6 times. Even as we are wandering, imprisoned, afflicted, and in the storms of life, His Unfailing love is always there.”
Out of the responses I received, the #1 answer was contained in one word…sacrifice!
* ProfessorAlan and lizdyer both said, “Love is sacrifice.”
* lucyannmoll said, “Love. . .sacrifice, unselfishness (as if this were humanly possible), God. God is love. Sounds like a Bible verse!”
* topabbott said, “The essence of love to me is one word, sacrifice. If we’re not willing to give something up for another, it’s not love.”
* filoiwiedenhoff said, “I thought about yr question yesterday and the word that keeps coming to mind is sacrificial. John 15:13 – No greater love than that…I’m learning love is to be willing to lay myself aside but it can only come through the power of Jesus. His love being poured out through me.”
Laying Himself aside, Christ poured out His physical life for the redemption of the world. As the Bridegroom, Jesus selflessly surrendered His life on earth for His bride, the church, whom He “loved…and gave Himself for her.” (Eph. 5:25b NKJV)
When we receive this sacrificial love into our lives, do we then willingly pour it out to others? Or are we too selfish and set in our own ways?
Peter tells us, “Now you can have real love for everyone because your souls have been cleansed from selfishness and hatred when you trusted Christ to save you; so see to it that you really do love each other warmly, with all your hearts.” (1 Peter 1:22 TLB)
Do we love others unselfishly as Jesus does, whether our spouses, families, friends, or others? Do we forget ourselves in order to help another? Do we endure being uncomfortable in order to make someone else comfortable? Do we forgo acquiring something in order to give to another?
Remember, “Whoever lives in love lives in God.” (1 John 4:16b NIV)
On this Valentine’s Day, from my heart to your heart, I wish you an infilling of love in Jesus’ name…