Love is an emotion that is nearly impossible to adequately define. Because of its anchoring role in human life, its behavior determines how every character within us acts. Definitions of Love tend to be more broad than necessary.
The truth is that love exists to simply love. Kindness is the expression of this character. Respect for one’s self and others is another trait of real love. How you treat yourself and others is an accurate gage of our own personal understanding of love.
Definitions of love are determined by the foundational truths it learned love from. If love was developed in discord, then expressions of authentic kindness can be influenced by deep rooted fears of being abused or rejected.
If we are to develop healthy relationships we must be open to extending kindness and respect to others as well as properly receiving it.
Brief attributes and opposites of authentic loving-kindness (not in any particular order):
- Abusive love is not love.
- Love that rejects God, self or others is not love.
- Love that is criticizing, controlling, selfish or manipulative is not love.
- Love is actually is kind, patient and never boasting.
- Love builds up, repairs, reconciles and encourages, it extends compassion at the right tempo, never out of harmony with truth and determination.
- Love owns its responsibilities and is accountable to God because He is love.
- Tough love, when done correctly, promotes betterment in others.
Tough love, when done incorrectly, negates the purpose of ‘tough love’ by its improper use of force. If dividing from a person is in order, do it for the sake of peace, the essence of Love.
For your first seven days, make an effort to be kind and respectful to every person you encounter, even people you live with. As you discover each attribute of Godly love within yourself you will then have a solid anchor to ground the remaining six weeks.
If you choose to actually do the challenges the the practices in love sets a steady pace for the following weeks.
True Love heals abusive and traumatic memories.
Have a loving week! W