I’ve heard it said and have quoted before – love is a verb. But I’ve been thinking – if love is an action word, then every action that appears loving will confirm that love is existent and is being expressed right? I think I’ve been wrong all this time. The reality is that sometimes people perform loving actions but their hearts and intentions tell a different story.
Therefore, I want to submit that love is two things. It is first a Pronoun. God is love. His loving actions flow out of His nature. He loves because Love is who He is. Secondly, I believe love is a noun. Love loves because love is. As an orange can only produce orange juice, so can love only produce love juice (I’m sorry I couldn’t find a better term). Love cannot do anything other than love – forgive, build up, correct, trust, protect, etc.
Why is this important?
Sometimes, we try to perform loving actions, but our hearts harbour a different intention and reveal a different expression. We should ask God to perfect our hearts, to fill our hearts with His love so that we would express a love that has been shed abroad in our hearts. I think if we spent more time choosing to love, instead of choosing to do things that only appear loving, we would lead more authentic lives.
Am I saying we shouldn’t be nice to people we find it hard to love? No. After all, love is not a feeling; it’s a choice. I am suggesting, however, that to continue performing loving actions when we know in our hearts that we do not truly love the object of our actions, is dangerous. God does not just want us to act like we love – He has empowered us to be love. He wants loving actions to flow out of who we are with this new nature. Perhaps, just perhaps, if we dedicated more energy to trying to actually be, we would find that it takes less energy to do.