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What is Love?-Part 5: Learning to love is a Process

Updated: Oct 14, 2023

Now that we know what love is, why love is important, its origins and expressions, we must now realize that showing this love actually takes time. We cannot speed up the process it takes to learn to love someone. With love, also comes the need to trust.

In order to love correctly, we must have God first. 1 John 4:7 says, “ Dear friends, we must love each other because love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born from God and knows God.” On the flip side, 1 John 4:8 says, “The person who doesn’t love doesn’t know God, because God is love.”


When we come to know God and His love for us first, we then can extend that love to other people. The more our relationship with God develops, the easier it becomes to love others, as He commands us to do (John 15:12). Loving other people as Christ loves us is possible because of the Holy Spirit within us. When we invite Christ into our life and receive His salvation, we are filled with the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 1:22). When we listen to the Holy Spirit’s prompting to do something, “fruit” or evidence can be produced out of us. Which is why Galatians 5:22-23 talks about the Fruit of the Spirit. These two scriptures read: “But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control. Against such things, there is no law.” Now, it doesn’t say “fruits,” implying that all of these things need to be actively at work within us and being actively produced out of us. Notice that “love” is listed first. This is because without love, we cannot even fathom or think it possible to display the other things that make up the fruit of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 13:2).

 

In addition to this, 1 John 4:12 says: “No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.” Verse 16 of this same chapter says: “So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”


So without God giving you His power to love, something that He is the best at doing, we will fail on our own. It takes God to love, and then it takes time to allow God to teach you how to love.

Doing the things that God calls us to do seems impossible at first glance, and that’s why Jesus explains something such as salvation being something that cannot be achieved by our own doing, but God’s. The same thing applies to us in regards to loving other people. It’s impossible to do without God. Matthew 19:26- “But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”


 

Allow the Holy Spirit to teach you His ways. Allow Him time to teach you how to love others properly. Allow Him time to teach you how to even love yourself correctly. Without Him, acting, receiving, expressing, and living in love, will be a losing battle. You need God first!! I mentioned at the beginning of this post that "with love, also comes the need to trust. " I want to leave you with some questions that you can keep in mind as you grow in your relationship with Christ and your knowledge of His love:

  • Do I trust God to take me through this process (of learning to love)?

  • Do I trust God enough that I believe His love me is true?

  • What doubts am I having when it comes to expressing love to other people?

  • What's stopping me from receiving love from other people?

  • Am I allowing the Holy Spirit to show me how to love or am I ignoring His guidance?

  • How long have I been walking with the LORD? Am I at a point where loving others is natural for me?


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