True Love Essay
by Darren Elder
Without exception, to love is to hurt. The moment you open yourself up to truly love someone else it will cost you. Somehow in God's economy the more abandoned to give ourselves away we are, the more richly fulfilled an at peace we become. At the same time, love is probably the most abused term in our or any other language. SO many times people speak of how they love others, and the word sounds the same, but rather than it being a self-sacrificing devotion; fear gives rise to selfishness and manipulation in disguise. This duplicity is fueled by a disconnection from a love we can't lose no matter what, and an over-acceptance of a love that is subject to fear and trends.
Jesus loves beyond human comprehension, logic or reason. He is the ultimate definition of True Love . When you consider... that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us (Rom 5:8) IT IS MIND BLOWING! He does not come to us under a heavy sigh saying... “Well, fine, straighten yourself out and I'll die for you.” Quite the contrary, the scripture Romans 8:35-39 speaks of how nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. NOTHING. The fact that I can't make Christ not love me has become nothing short of Revolutionary to my relationship with Him and everyone else. This premise is one that I have to return to daily. It breathes new and eternal life into my entire being. His unshakeable love frees us to get beyond ourselves. To dare to love without consideration of consequences, borders, or boundaries. Love that is truly living, active and relentless. Love is a verb. Love aches to change the world. We have read that faith without works is dead. Clearly, faith demands action, and action without love is noise. The scriptures are bursting with the commandment that our faith matters to those around us. This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no compassion on him how can the love of God be on them (1 John 3:16-17), and the kind of religion God honors cares for (loves) orphans and widows in their distress (James 1:27). Jesus said, whatever we do for the least of these, we have done for Him (Matt 25:40) A contention that is part of our band's DNA is that in response to the love we have been given, we will matter in the fight against modern-day slavery. That is our hope. We are honored to work with some amazing abolitionist organizations that we believe to be the hands and feet of Love. We are humbled and honored to stand with the Not For Sale Campaign, International Justice Mission, Love 146 and ChildVoice International in the name of Jesus... Love Himself.
Fear is a thief. Fear is a love thief. Fear is the anti-love. It robs us of the beauty of relationships and fulfillment.
Ironically, perfect love drives out fear.
I believe the question for us becomes, how then shall we love? There is a distinction that must be made in each of our lives. What sort of love will define us, and how will our definitions fuel our actions? How will we live true love in our relationships? I HATE it when this gets away from me! It is so easy for hurt people to hurt people without knowing. So often we love others by how we have been loved. Choosing to love will leave us vulnerable to all manner of emotional shrapnel. But, the moment we start to consider how to protect ourselves from the possible “what ifs” we aren't letting love lead us. If we only choose to put our heart on the live after we have calculated the risk it's not love at all.
This double-edged sword cuts all of us at one time or another. So many times we are broken before we are built... some times it is true love that breaks us, sometimes it is the imitation... but it is always the real thing that heals us and builds us into what we are supposed to be.
To love is to hurt... but it's worth it.