Love is not really about hearts and flowers, candy or jewelry, the warm fuzzy feelings of “being in love,” or a nice Hallmark card. (Sorry Hallmark; I do enjoy your movies and your accompanying commercials.)
Love is so much more.
We honor love on February 14. So I have been considering the wonderous qualities of this thing called love.
Oddly enough my thoughts have gone to being an only child. Because of it, I never experienced sibling rivalry or what some children think is divided attention from their parents.
Sweet William and I had an only child also, not by choice but by Providence. All my affections were lavished on this one boy. I put all my eggs in his basket.
Years later when we learned we were to be grandparents, I was excited about adding a girl-child to our family. At the moment our first and only granddaughter was born I fell madly in love with her.
When she was about 4 years old, her mom and dad told us they were expecting another child. I never voiced it, but honestly I wondered how I could possibility love another grandchild like I loved the first one. I had no experience in loving a second child.
My concerns were completely unfounded and proved to be untrue when I met the second tiny little girl. How could I have known my heart would burst wide open for her. Alas, when the third grandchild came along, I had this love thing down. I never doubted for a minute that he would make his own wonderful place in my heart. And he did.
So there is the premise for my thoughts about love. Just when we think we have given it all away, someone else comes into our lives to love. Wonder of wonders, our love multiplies, and we have more than enough to give again.
I have proven it to be true as the years have added family members by birth and by marriage. Friends, young and older, have found their way into my life, and more love sprang up from a well deep within me. I have discovered I have an enlarged heart and it’s incurable!
Atheists can argue that we evolved to this. I beg to differ. We are born completely self-centered while parents, teachers, ministers, and counselors try to teach us to share our toys and to think about someone other than ourselves.
We are not naturally others-focused.
Where else could this capacity to love come from but the God who reveals Himself as Love, who showed His love in the most tangible way on Calvary’s cross when we did not love Him?
This love shows up in an aged wife who spends her days and energy caring for her ailing husband because he took care of her so many years.
It is pictured in the baby-boomer adult children who are now in the role of providing for the needs of parents who can no longer live on their own.
I see it in those who open their homes and their hearts to foster children who may be so wounded they cannot return love yet.
The mother who wonders where her wayward child is tonight, who prays unceasingly, whose love will not let him go bears the mark of this love.
Loving the unlovely, the unloveable, the broken and the hopeless could only originate from the Eternal Originator of all things good and perfect.
This wonderous thing we celebrate has its source in God. For love is from God.
An old song comes to mind, the words of a poet, Frederick Lehman.
Could we with ink the ocean fill and were the skies of parchment made;
Were every stalk on earth a quill and every man a scribe by trade –
To write the love of God above would drain the ocean dry,
Nor could the scroll contain the whole, tho’ stretched from sky to sky.
O love of God, how rich and pure! How measureless and strong!
It shall forever more endure the saints and angels song
Happy Valentine’s Day dear ones, family and friends whom I love sincerely. You have made my life richer and have filled my heart to overflowing.