I’m generally not one to speak up in a classroom setting, though I usually have something to say! Naturally, that leaves me with all kinds of thoughts rolling around inside my head, just waiting for a chance to escape. So here’s the chance…
In Bible class Sunday morning, we talked about love. What does it look like? What does it do? How do we express it? A common theme running through various responses was that love is a verb – an action. It’s something we do, not necessarily something we feel. Or is it? Well, yes and no, I think.
Imagine, if you will, that you have been the recipient of an act of kindness. You felt so loved, so honored, that someone would think of you in such a way. You felt great, until the person who performed the kindness lets you know just how much time, energy, effort, or money it cost him to do this for you. Now you don’t feel so great, right? Fast forward a month. You have been continually reminded during the last 30 days that you are indebted to this person. Wow! You just wish he would have never done anything for you in the first place!
See, our hearts need to be in the right place in order for our loving acts to come across as such. An act of love shouldn’t leave a person feeling guilty, or indebted. It should leave a person feeling humbled and loved.
It isn’t loving to keep a scorecard of who owes whom.
It isn’t loving to make sure you get all the credit you ‘deserve’ for doing a good deed.
It seems to me that, yes, love is an action, but it needs to be accompanied by a feeling of compassion toward others. If we have both, we will be less likely to do things simply because we know it’s the right thing to do, but because we genuinely want to help another human being. We do it because we care. We do it because we love.