So here’s how I think real love looks through that perspective.
The rest of the world says that love looks like what others can do for me.
"I love him because of the way he makes me feel,” for example. That’s a self-focused love. It’s about your feelings.
“I love her because she’s a great cook.”
Again, that’s about what she does, not who she is.
The kingdom perspective of love, on the other hand, is others-focused. It’s about what you appreciate about who the person is.
It’s about what you can do for others, out of a desire to bring them joy or comfort… simply because you love them for who they are.
I began thinking about the difference between self-focused love and others-focused love when I was at a funeral.
There was one person there who was very expressive about her grief. But the more I listened to what she said regarding this loss, the more I realized it was all about her.
She was lamenting how her life was negatively affected by this death, and not expressing grief over the loss of a loved one.
That’s when I began to wonder what real love looks like, because this didn’t really seem like it.
I started noticing how other people talked about love, and how sometimes it was very me-focused and other times it was very them-focused.
I also began observing how people behaved toward their loved ones when they had a me-focus compared to having the them-focus.
And, turns out, what I noticed echoes a verse from the Christian new testament:
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
But what does that mean for us? Well, I’d like to suggest that love means being willing to lay down your desires for someone else.
It’s being willing to sacrifice.
We refer to “the ultimate sacrifice” as someone being willing to die to save someone else’s life. Hopefully you’ll never face that kind of test of your love!
But think about the most prevalent picture of love, at least in the romantic sense. I mean, of course, the big white wedding, with the poofy dress and the flowers everywhere and the towering cake.
While the dress and the party get most of the attention, the whole crux of a wedding is actually the exchange of vows. That’s the whole point of a wedding (at least in a technical sense).
These days vows can take any shape or form, but most of us are at least familiar with the traditional vows. We vow to love each other in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, until we are parted by death.
The way these vows are worded reflects the idea of self-sacrifice.
You must become willing to put down your own self-interest and desires for the sake of your beloved, if you’re going to be able to make this lifelong commitment.
Genuine love is not measured by how another person makes you feel. It’s measured by how willing you are to be uncomfortable for someone else’s sake.
Don’t get me wrong: I’m not talking about jeopardizing your safety or compromising your values to appease someone else’s unreasonable demands or desires.
I’m talking about being willing to give up your comfort, to whatever extent, for the benefit of someone else. There’s an element of service to it, not submission.
Here at Kings Loot, we want you to feel our love extending to you with every interaction. We’re in this for you!