Here’s what I know about love: not much!
All my life, I have longed for love. Since my dad wasn’t around, I always thought I wasn’t good enough to be loved. Love is a tough subject, it can be hard to discuss or to even think about. But I’m going to risk it.
Growing up, I always heard that “everyone loves in their own way.” As I got older, that turned in to, “everyone loves in their own way, but you don’t have to accept it.” While I agree that everyone does love in their own way (hence the five love languages) I have come to realize that I do not so much agree with the thought that you don’t have to accept it. That’s like saying, “I know my kids love me, but I don’t like the way they love me, so I’m not going to accept their love.” – that sounds totally absurd!! But we (people in general) do that to others on a regular basis. To say that you shouldn’t accept the love of others if it’s not the way you want it seems absolutely absurd to me. It seems like you’d be missing out on a whole lot of love and friendship.
It wasn’t until recently that I came to understand the truth of unconditional love. I have always been afraid of love, while at the same time craving it, because I was also afraid of rejection. But unconditional love, that’s a whole different thing. Unconditional love says that He’ll still love me even when I mess up…when I mess up bad!!
You see, you can’t expect other people to love you the way you want them to, but you can expect them to love you the only way they know how. My husband and I speak two different love languages, and once I realized that and began to accept that he doesn’t show his love the way I want to see it, I became happier. I became less bitter. I became less resentful. Too often we say that there is something wrong with the other person, but how often do we step back and even consider that it might be us?
If we changed our perspective, things would look a whole lot different. So before you decide that someone doesn’t love you, ask yourself: Am I expecting them to love me how I want to be loved or am I letting them love me the only way they know how?
1 Corinthians 13:4-13 – Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor 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. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.