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WHAT LOVE IS




It’s the season of love, so what better way to celebrate than to teach and educate people about what the reason for the season is all about. This word can hardly be defined as to each person it has different meanings. To some it’s blind, to some it’s wicked. To some, it’s awesome. To some, it’s difficult to find. If a thousand and one persons are asked what love is, one would get a thousand and one different answers. Some do not even know what it is as they have wrong conceptions about it. I was at a meeting recently and the speaker asked what is love, everyone that answered had different opinions about what love is and they were ready to keep throwing in answers till the lady stopped them.
Attempting to define love would be trying to make the longest sentence in this world. So what then would I do regarding the title? I would describe love, cause that’s the best that can be done.
Love is a lot of things

The best description of love is contained in the bible in 1st Corinthians 13:1-9 which I’ll reproduce below.

Verse 1 says that if I speak in the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.

Verse 2 says that if I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

Verse 3 says if I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

These three verses describe love in terms of it’s importance. They describe love as important, so important that even if you are a prophet or prophetess or you speak in all forms of tongue, fathom all forms of mysteries, have faith that moves mountain, give all you have to the poor but have not love, it’s all nothing. These are biblical doctrines that help us in the Christian race but the bible considers it nothing if love is not included because love aids in their excellence and just use. So love is important as without it, other Christian virtues are bodies without a head. In listing the fruits of the spirit, love comes first because it is the greatest gift given to mankind by God and it is the most beautiful feeling.

Verse 4 says love is patient that’s to say love is tolerant, love endures. Humans are from different backgrounds and have different make-ups and these contribute to how we act. Love is patient with a vulgar friend working out their character. Love melts away the frustration that so often hamper one’s dealings with others. When the object of one’s love fails or disappoints, love becomes patient.

It also says love is kind, that’s to say love is caring. Love is good-natured, tender, affectionate and not harsh. Love shares our little food with our neighbour that have none. Love gives a classmate or colleague that is hungry at the moment with no money N200 to buy food. Love helps out a stranger with so much luggage trying to cross a road to enter taxi to carry some of the luggage. Love is there for a friend, a family member, a church member going through difficult times. Love encourages a discouraged person. Love is helpful when needed, love is generous, that is, can give without expecting anything in return. Love is friendly and is desirous of doing good.

It also says Love does not envy that’s to say love is not unnecessarily jealous. Love is happy for a progressing friend or neighbour and rejoices with them sincerely. Love does not convert another’s property out of envy but is rather inspired to be zealous. Love does not speak ill of someone’s success out of envy.

It also says that love does not boast that is there is no arrogance in love. Love is focused on the loved one, not on oneself. Love is not rude. Love does not make another feel incomplete and inferior.

It also says love is not proud. Love does not lift himself high above others. Love does not treat some people as trash or as unequal or as of a lower class. Love is not hasty with his lips to utter unbecoming words. Love does not belittle others.

Verse 5 says love is not rude. That is, love is not insulting. Love is not wicked. Love has good manners. Love doesn’t shun an elder when he is talking even though he might be wrong. Love does not push one out of the way instead of a polite excuse. Love does not act inappropriately. Love does not speak harshly in making corrections.

It also says love is not self-seeking. Love doesn’t have goals so high and lofty that it blinds one to the needs of those around him. Love is not selfish or self-centered. Love cares about the neighbour as one’s self. Love does not trample on other’s right for the sake of upholding his own.

It also says that love is not easily angered. Love doesn’t pick offence at every little mistake of a person. Love does not get angry and insult because a personal item was spoilt. Love exercises patience enough and is slow to anger. Love is quick to forgive a wrong instead of getting annoyed. Love does not make hurtful comments, seek vindication immediately and refuse to give second chances.

It also says that love keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not deal with the past. Love forgives and forgets. Love does not keep planning a revenge. Love does not judge or doubt. Love moves on from a forgiven hurt. Love does not keep listing past sins. Love lets go of the past. Love does not always have an axe to grind.

Verse 6 says that love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth; Love is justice. Love does not conceal the truth. Love does not rejoice when a wrong is done. Love does not delight in immoral acts. Love does not cover up evil. Love promotes good virtue. Love does not gloat over someone’s guilt. Love rejoices in the virtue of others not their vices.

Verse 7 says that love always protects; Love always, does not intentionally allow harm to come another’s way. Love always, is not mischievous, unruly or revengeful. Love always drags out Mrs Nkechi’s daughter who is always innocently walking into the high way even though Mrs Nkechi insulted her earlier. Love always bears all things. Love always preserves. Love always watches out for others, love always covers up one’s fault to prevent harm. Here love always gives rather than receiving.

It also says that love always trust; Love always gives a second chance {not naively though}. Love believes in one. Love will always give the benefit of doubt. Love believes in the best of someone even with a chequered past.

It also says that love always hopes. Love still has a dose of confidence left. Love never says die. Love does not give up on someone but keeps praying. Love is the lifeline that the hurting can hold onto, that’s why we are encouraged to show love to people in such situations. Love always points to a brighter day ahead.

It also says that love always perseveres; Love endures to remain, love continues during the good and bad times. Love remains even when the going is bad.  Love doesn’t quit or give up. Love is in sickness and in health. Love is for richer or for poorer. Love is in difficulty and in enjoyment. Love remains when he is being kind and when he is wicked. Love scales through thorns. Love keeps preaching the gospel even when there is persecution.

Verse 8 sums it all up when it says love never fails. This means that love never ends. Love is a perpetual light in a dark world. Love is not a passing feeling.

Love is like perfection and no one is yet perfect that’s why the best description of love is that love is God and God is love because it is only God that exercises love in it’s entirety. Our love is conditional. We show love with expectation of being loved back without which we stop showing the love. Verse 5 above says that love is not self-seeking. It doesn’t exist for what it’ll get in return. It puts others above not because they would put him above. But God loves us unconditionally. Even when we make promises he never asked from us and fail, his love for us stands. He gave his only begotten son (other sons are we. We were not begotten to him but made his sons because we received him, jn 1 v 12. It’s like giving your own son you bore for 9 months to die in place of the one you adopted), he keeps enduring our sins up until the last day, he is so patient with us(He endured the stupid retorts and actions of the Israelites for years before reacting), He quickly forgives when we run back to him, he is kind and shows us his tender mercy, he is slow to anger, He puts us above himself, He created the world and put us in charge, He is always awake just to watch over us, He prevents harm from coming our way(sometimes, I wonder if he takes a break away from all this world business to rest his ears, neck and eyes that should be aching from hearing so much complains), His love for us never fails. His love is the only perfect love, His love is love as described above in it’s entirety. So maybe love can be defined after all as God.

 Love is God’s greatest gift to mankind and unfortunately, it is one of the gifts that has been ignored and it is it’s the only gift that’s the root solution to all forms of problem. The boko-harams are taught to feel hate towards mankind and that’s the only way they can kill comfortably like they are killing snakes. If we all can learn to show love, the society would be a better place to live in. Love sustains all forms of human relationships when it is unconditional. There is already so much suffering and pain in the world today so let’s shed love abroad in our hearts so that it can rub off in our actions.
photo credit: nonstopshow.com

Love

      Kambi.

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