Rebecca and I have been writing this blog about unconditional love for about two years now. Therefore, it’s no surprise that the topic consistently comes up in conversations with others. What I do find disturbing is the great number of people who struggle to find evidence of U Love in their lives. There is no doubt about it. People crave unconditional love. We were all created to receive it; yet, so often, even when people have been loved well, unconditional love is still missing in their lives.
Regardless of a person’s age, gender, background, or their relationship with God, many people admit to me that they do not know how to give and/or receive love unconditionally. Clearly, some people are better at showing U Love than others, but it seems that most everyone finds some degree of difficulty in experiencing unconditional love. Certainly, those of you who follow this blog know the many times I have confessed my failure to show others U Love, and I write about unconditional love each week!
When the subject arises, I repeatedly refer people to God’s description of unconditional love as outlined in 1 Corinthians: 13 of the Bible. When I explain to others that “how to” show U Love is no mystery, but is easily understood by applying the principles in 1 Corinthians 13, I often hear a sigh of relief that there is actually a solution to the challenge.
Let me reiterate those U Love principles to you:
Love is patient and kind. It does not envy or boast. It is not proud or rude. It is not self-seeking. It is not easily angered, and keeps no record of wrongs. It does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
LOVE NEVER FAILS!!
If you closely study these guidelines, you can quickly see that loving unconditionally is not complicated. The circumstances to which U Love is applied may be complicated, but U Love, in and of itself, is not hard to understand. Basically, to love unconditionally, one has to be patient and kind to others; put the other person first; don’t get angry quickly or bring up the other person’s faults; and always be honest with the other person (in a kind, loving way, of course). Sounds simple enough; so, why is it so hard to accomplish? I posed this question to Rebecca, because she seems to have a pretty good handle on how to love unconditionally. Here is her astute response.
As my mom has said, we have clear direction from the Bible as to how to put into practice unconditional love. However, reading about it and accomplishing it are two very different things. Even people who have a close relationship with God will often find it a struggle to actually put into practice what we know we should be doing. I mean, let’s be honest here; it is not an easy task to be loving and forgiving towards someone you don’t like, or who has wronged you! There’s just no two ways about it. In thorny situations, human nature will naturally not want to respond with love.
So, what do we do about this predicament? We know what we should be doing, but transferring it from our head into our behavior is the real issue. There are two basic ideas that I think can help us all show more U love, even when we don’t want to. First, you may have heard the phrase “to love is a choice, not a feeling.” That statement couldn’t be more true. It really comes down to making the willful choice to love. We make a lot of choices in life, and this is just another one of them.
If we really want to, in most situations, we do have the will power to make ourselves choose to love. The problem is, we don’t always want to. And, that’s where it’s up to us to choose the loving action to take. I remember multiple times in my life where my human nature “SO” didn’t want to show U Love towards someone. I had to literally force myself to act in kindness and love, completely against my will. LOL. But, you know what? After I began showing love, even though it wasn’t necessarily coming from the right motive in the beginning, it eventually became easier, until it ended up coming from a true heart of love.
Second, when we truly understand, deep down in our inner spirit, how forgiven, loved, and unconditionally accepted we all are by the Creator of the universe, a freedom comes upon us like no other. We suddenly feel extremely light and secure, rather than oppressed by faults and failures. Our demeanor and attitude towards ourselves, our life, and everyone else, can do an about face. It suddenly becomes much easier to show others what we have already received…..unconditional love from a perfect God.
In fact, I think it should be our mission to inform others about this precious gift of unconditional love that’s available to them. They can then receive it in their own lives and pass it on! What better way to share unconditional love with others then to SHOW them unconditional love.
You’ve likely heard the phrase that “actions speak louder than words.” That’s the truth, especially in this case. We must learn to SHOW unconditional love to others, as our means of telling them about it. That’s where real life-change happens! As difficult as it can be sometimes, I encourage everyone to act out the principles found in 1 Corinthians 13, so that each one of us can show more U Love in life. I do believe we all can help to make the world a more loving place, one encounter at a time!
Please join our U Love chain here!