“Love cannot be forced, love cannot be coaxed and teased. It comes our of heaven, unasked and unsought.” -Pearl Buck-
True Love ‘agape’ is often-times mistaken in our Western culture depiction as “romanticism” that originated in Europe toward the end of the 18th century. The elementary basis for this moment was an effort to assert the validity of subjective experience and to in essence escape the “humdrum” unexciting routine that our lives sometime produce.
The key observation is noted in the usage of “subjective” which clearly identifies the origin of the “romantic,” namely the mind; the imaginative but often-time impractical notions that may or not, be based on facts. On the very basic level, this romantic notion is not problematic. The difficulty arises when the relationship between two people is firmly established by this spirit and or desire. Love for so many in our culture means being prepared to approve their partners every desire and decision-thus helping to “fulfill” them. How many times have you and I heard this refrain from our love ones, “If you love me you’ll do what I say or give me what I what!”
The greater love which is superior to that of romanticism is listed in 1 Cor. 13:4-8. This love [agape] from a Biblical perspective is empowered by the Holy Spirit and not by one’s subjective imagination. Agape means wanting what is the very best/good for your love ones, or any human-being in need. The one who is move toward agape is willed to be prepared to help them toward that means, even if it means disapproving of their expressed desires and decisions, or even loving them so much that it is necessary to pray for them, releasing them to God while discontinuing or terminating the relationship.
“What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.” -Saint Augustine-
Grace and Peace!
Alonzo E. Thornton