Photo from jenellbstewart.com
It’s the month of love once again and sure enough, all around are signs that Valentines Day is fast approaching. Falling in love is something that most of us dream of doing. How can we not when the movies depict love as something that’s exciting and wonderful and exhilarating?
But, what does love really mean? Is it the candlelit dinners, chocolates and flowers and stuffed toys? Or is it much more than that?
To define the real meaning of love, let’s go back to the author of love. This is Session 1 of 50 Shades of Red – as shared by the speaker Mr. Mel Santos – Human love vs God’s love.
This is how God defines love.
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Love is so much more than what we feel. Love is action-oriented. It’s selfless, something that is to be channeled towards others. But we need to know God’s love first before we can give it to others. We can’t give what we don’t have.
For relationships, this is a good standard of what love is.
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.
-1 Corinthians 13: 4-7
To truly love others we need to have the right definition of love. Love as God defines it.
||Biblical (1 Corinthians 13)
|Emotional (centered of feelings)
||Commitment (a decision)
|Hasty (whirlwind romance)
||Patient (willing to go through the right process)
|Self-serving (what can I get?)
||Unselfish (what can I give?)
|Temporary (until I’m no longer happy)
||God motivated (God as the center)
When it comes to romantic love, it can be hard to separate what’s real from your emotions. It “feels” right, so I should be with this person. Or, he makes me so happy. He must be the one. But how do you know if a person is your Gods Best? You must go through the right process.
Friendship – Courtship – Marriage
Photo from mirelladeboni.com
These days courtship is no longer done by singles. Instead, it has been replaced with “dating”. And no, its not the same thing.
What’s the difference between dating and courtship?
Dating is based solely on attraction
Courtship is based on attraction and trusted counsel. You need to ask your parents, spiritual mentors, close friends if this person that you’re thinking of courting is right for you. These are the people that know and love you and they only want what’s best for you.
Dating is about impressing the other person. It’s putting your best foot to make that person like you.
Courtship is about being honest and building trust. It’s showing the other person who you truly are.
Dating involves only the two of you.
Courtship involves God, parents (blessings), mentors (advise) and friends.
Dating is secretive. You go out and tell no one. You don’t really share your love life with others.
Courtship is public. Its about being open to the people you trust about what’s happening between the two of you.
Dating is impulsive, short sighted.
Courtship is intentional. Planned > engagement > marriage. The intention of courtship should be marriage.
Dating puts intimacy first before commitment.
Courtship puts commitment before intimacy.
Courting is about intentionally building a foundation for marriage.
You may think it’s hard to find love these days. And if you look for it in the world, you’re right. Because the world defines love in a very different way. But if you look for love in the right place, the author, Jesus – you will never be disappointed.
Seek him first and all else will follow.
If you want to fall in love, by all means, do. But be sure to follow the process so you’ll avoid unnecessary pain and have your happy ending.
This is only Session 1 of the 4 Series of 50 Shades of Red. For those who want to join the remaining 3 sessions, you may drop by Elevate Hub, CCF, Limketkai next Friday at 6:30pm. Bring a friend!
50 Shades of LOVE Series
Session 1: Human Love vs Gods Love (Feb 12)
Session 2: Love and Sexuality (Feb 19)
Session 3: Love and Being Singe – Mr. Right/Ms. Right (Feb 26)
Session 4: New Rules in Dating (March 4)