Love Is THE Solution for Relationship Problems
Love is THE solution for all relationship problems. In fact, love will solve THE PROBLEM for all relationships. And, if you have read or watched any of the GR8 Relationships material, you know the PROBLEM is when you "make everything about ME!"
What Is Love?
When you say you “love” someone, what are you actually saying?
Since God's Word provides “…all things that pertain to life and godliness…” (2 Peter 1:3), it makes sense to read what God says about love.
Before you read the verses below, think about a relationship you have. Especially if it is experiencing some problems right now. Thinking about that relationship then reading the verses will be more beneficial.
Now read the following verses slowly and reflect on that relationship.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is the solution!
Would you help your relationship if you did those things? Of course you would!
Then why aren't those things happening in your relationships? You may have heard and read this passage many times, but biblical knowledge requires action to make changes in your life. And you won't do those things when your definition of love is more about ME than others. It is so typical to talk about love, but not act according to God’s description of love.
We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. – Jonathan Swift
A clear head and a deep understanding are of no value without a benevolent and charitable heart. – Matthew Henry
World’s View of Love
The world completely misses the beauty of love as God has described it. There are so many bad definitions of the word love.
World’s “love” is selfish
It encourages flashing your ME, seeking our own good above the good of others. It is not kind, because that means you would be thinking about the other person. The world’s view of love too often wants to control others.
World's "love" is conditional
It is dependent upon your needs being met, and as long as that is happening, you will “love” them. What’s worse, the conditions keep changing, because your expectations keep changing. When you first were attracted to them, the conditions were few. Now that you know them, the expectations are much more intense and numerous. No longer is it okay just to have them say they love you, it requires scientific proof!
World's "love" is temporary
When you are not happy, when things get uncomfortable or difficult in the relationship, or when you no longer feel loved or loving, then love is gone. It’s fleeting as magic fairy dust that gets blown away in high wind. It knows nothing of patience.
That thinking drives the statement about “falling in love”. When you fall, it is not something you decided to do, it happened to you, right? You are caught in a wave of feelings, you are sprinkled with love dust and poof, you are now in love! Yes, I do believe in “chemistry” between people. It is real, but that is attraction, not love. If you can “fall in love”, obviously, you can “fall out of love”. When the love dust is gone, you no longer love them. In other words, that view says love is some force of the universe that stays with you or it doesn’t.
When you look at the world’s selfish, conditional and temporary love, it is easy to not want that, and want love to be different. But how often are you relating to others that way? What is your definition of love? How do you love people in your life?
God’s View of Love
Here are most of the English definitions of the word “love” from Webster’s Dictionary.
There is only one that gets close to the 1 Corinthians description. If 1 Corinthians 13 and other passages like Ephesians 5 are used, a good working definition of love can be created.
Pursuing the best (highest good) for others, patiently, kindly, sacrificially, and unconditionally
What would be different in your life and relationships, if you define love that way? Practicing that definition would solve the PROBLEM and all of the relationship mistakes you make.
Not About the One Loved
Most importantly, notice this definition says nothing about the one loved. It does not pursue the best for others “as long as they pursue my best, too.” It does not limit the suffering, kindness, sacrifice in proportion to how well the other person behaves. The supreme example is Christ, who perfectly practiced this definition. He loves you patiently, kindly, sacrificially, and unconditionally while you were still a sinner (Romans 5:6), while you were spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:4, 5), while you were his enemy (Romans 5:10)! There is no way you will ever be able to pay Him back or be worthy of His love. And still He loves you!
This is the love He calls you to have for others. Love is THE solution! This is the love that satisfies, because it is not dependent on others. This is the love which transforms horrible relationships into beauty, hope, and freedom.
Next Time You Say, "I Love You"
The very next time you say “I love you” ask yourself, “Am I willing to pursue their best, their highest good; patiently, kindly, sacrificially and unconditionally?”
The critical difference between real love and the world’s love is the word “decision”. Love is a decision to which your feelings respond. Beyond attraction is where love exists and that requires a decision to pursue their best, their highest good; patiently, kindly, sacrificially and unconditionally.
Love is the THE solution. Itsolves THE PROBLEM. Are you willing to decide to love others?