Love is, Part Five: Love is a Verb
Love’s no wimp.
Love defends the defenseless without a hint of defensiveness. Love disables bad habits and illuminates better choices. Love stands up for the afflicted. Love cooks for the hungry. Love weeps with the mourners. Love listens to the disheartened. Love steps away from the keyboard instead of typing an angry retort. Love bandages the bleeding. Love mends the broken. And unlike hate, love is eternal.
Angela Nazworth, (in)courage
Love isn't just a feeling. It's an action. Love does things.
Have you read Bob Goff's book Love Does? If not, I highly recommend picking up a copy! It was such an eye-opening read that taught me that love is far more than we traditionally consider it to be.
Love doesn't stop about just caring for someone or about something. It's more than that. It's taking action. It's fighting for something or someone. It's taking care of someone. It's standing up for someone. It's showing respect, kindness, and compassion.
We might think we're being loving when we care about a cause that's close to our hearts, but real love acts on that passion.
Real love finds ways to serve-- giving money to support an organization fighting to end hunger or trafficking, serving food at a homeless shelter, donating food to a food shelf, raising money for a fundraiser, going on a trip to lend a helping hand.
We often underestimate the power of our words. But the things we say have great power.
Think about it-- can you recall a specific time when someone has said something that bolstered your pride, gave you renewed confidence, or made you grin from ear to ear?
On the other end of the spectrum, can you think of a time when someone said something that made you feel small, insignificant, unimportant, or unworthy?
Words have power, and we can learn to use them for good. We can choose to build others up-- to love others-- with our words.
We can give genuine compliments, offer up encouragement, and cheer people on instead of cutting them down or criticizing them. That's love.
EVERYDAY ACTS OF LOVE
It's easy to see the grand gestures of love-- people who commit their whole lives to serving and caring for others or donate huge sums of money to aid in relief efforts.
I don't mean to belittle those acts of love. They're amazing!
But they're not always readily accessible.
Some of us don't have the means to love like that. Or at least we don't think we do.
But we all have something to contribute.
We can choose to love those around us well, wherever we are.
We can shovel a neighbor's sidewalk, bring food to a family with a new baby or hospitalized family member, send an encouraging text message, call an old friend or a family member, or help a coworker who's swamped with tasks.
We can pay for the coffee of the person behind us at the coffee shop, bring some canned goods to a food pantry, or write a note to a service member overseas.
Just because we can't do everything doesn't mean we can't do anything.
We can love. We can act.
How can you show love today? I'd love to hear from you in the comments!