The day after Christmas I went to a department store to hit-up their after Christmas sale. As I turned the corner from the home decor to the baby section there it was – a little baby Valentine onesie with a big heart outlined in red and the word “Love” written in the middle.
Valentine’s Day has always been a day I could do without. Single, dating, or married, Valentine’s Day with its paper doilies and cut-out hearts is just a little too cheesy for me. I am a melancholic, and for us pop music and chocolate roses pushes the limits.
But it’s not just Valentine’s Day that’s cheesy. The word “love” itself has become cliché in our culture. I skim through 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 whispering in my head “yeah, yeah, yeah”. Even it seems cliché at this point. Everyone screams the words “All we need is love” and “Love one another” and “Just love” when we continue to move further away from the love of 1 Corinthians.
Today the word “love” is used to manipulate and dominate. It’s used to spread untruth and work agendas. “Love” is used to justify selfishness and demand our own rights. It’s used to pacify deep hurts. We even use it to explain our affection for queso dip and coffee and cowboy boots. Love has become an empty word – far from the word Jesus uses. It’s the most abused word in our culture.
You see, love is a verb. It’s an action word. It’s not a feeling or a whim. It’s what you do. It’s not what you do for yourself. It’s not what you do for someone else with an indirect benefit for yourself. Love is what you do for someone else without expecting anything in return. It’s not spreading false teaching in the name of love. It’s not politically correct. Love is truth. Love says what’s hard to say. Love is undeserved. Love doesn’t understand but moves anyway. Love is sacrificial.
From Hollywood, to friendships, to dating relationships, to families, and through churches, we don’t do love well.
Over the next few weeks I want to talk about love. Not our culture’s definition of love, but the love of Jesus. I want to dissect 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 from different angles and how it applies to different relationships. We can’t change everyone’s application of love, but we can change our own. So let’s change the most abused word in our language – starting with ourselves.
What are your thoughts about Valentine’s Day? Yay or Nay??