One of the more common topics about faith is the connection between faith and love. It’s the building block of one of the most popular Bible verses – John 3:16.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
I’ve always looked at love as something that we do rather than something that we feel. Sure, we feel love as an intense emotion but I always look for that outward expression of love. I want to see love in a person’s behaviors because I believe that without accompanying actions, words are meaningless.
It’s that way with God. God said He loves us (and I believe Him) but He also sacrificed His only son in order to save us. That’s an action that I think is pretty obviously an incredible display of love. It’s that sacrifice that causes the world to call God’s love the greatest love ever known.
The Bible actually has a lot to say about the connection between love and actions.
Let all that you do be done in love. – 1 Corinthians 16:14
Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. – 1 John 4:8
Go ahead…tweet that.Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. Click To Tweet
Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:29-31
I base my life around those verses and the belief that God is love, and love is actions. I try to remind myself every day to let love guide my life and my behaviors. I try to make sure that I speak graciously and from a place of love. I try to treat others with kindness and grace. It’s hard, but love is hard.
Belle Brita put the faith prompt out there for today’s #LoveBlog asking how faith teaches love and how that love through faith influences my relationships. When it comes to love and relationships I continually refer to the ever popular 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 ESV
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.
I try to show patience, kindness, hope, endurance, and graciousness in my relationships and marriage. I try not to envy him or his successes; and I try not to be boastful of my own. I try not to be arrogant, rude, or self-righteous. It’s tough, but I try.
Sometimes that means…
- Picking up the dirty clothes or wet towels without complaint or nagging.
- Smiling and/or laughing as I am told the same story or joke I’ve heard many times before.
- Celebrating his successes and accomplishments.
- Making his coffee because I’m in the kitchen even though he’s capable of doing it himself.
- Wiping off the bathroom counter after he leaves it wet instead of complaining.
I do those things, and more, to show love and with the understanding that he overlooks and accepts my flaws as well. He doesn’t say anything about my tendency to leave clothes on the floor beside the dirty clothes hamper instead of in the hamper. He doesn’t complain about the hair I envitably leave on the bathroom floor. He also listens patiently every day as I vent about work or blog stresses.
Because that’s what love does. That’s how you make love an action.
How do you believe faith and love are connected? What role does this play in your relationships?