Along life’s path we all experience so many different feelings and facets of what love might be. It’s like it is segmented into pieces that we, as humans, can somehow understand. Maybe the full depth of it is so overwhelming that slicing it up like pieces of warm apple pie is the only way we can handle its implications. So, we segment, and find places in our lives where different facets of love belong.
Of course, there is infatuation; the facet of love that is most confusing. We are meant to be infatuated with others. It is how deeper love can begin, or not. Infatuation is like a mini suburb of love. It takes what is seen and sensed on the outside and makes us feel all dizzy, dancing and emotionally almost high. In truth, infatuation causes changes in the brain that create a certain natural high that many of us mistake for love which is meant to be deeper.
Then there is dedication love. There might not be a dizzy dancing feeling but there is a certain sense of being there for someone or others. In a personal relationship dedication love can be provision, friendship, or taking care of one another. Dedication love is created in many different bonds. Some can be marriage, but mostly friendship, or fellowship in vocation and even faith.
There is a facet of love that carries with it a kind of affection. Affectionate love might be romantic but it could also be within the bonds of a deeper friendship. Affectionate love gives us a sense of giving to another because of our fondness of the person, their life, or an emotional fondness. We can even have affectionate love for our pets, who love unconditionally and so sweetly.
Dare I mention this one, the deepest and most profound love of all? There is a soul love that happens between two people that goes deeper, closer, and is more profound than any other. It is the kind that comes from the depth of God within us. It digs deep like an oil rig searching for the next spout of liquid gold. It goes wide, like the sunrise to sunset we witness every single day and evening. Soul love does not seek to be right, it seeks to know more. It does not enable the other to be unhealthy, but gives a hand up when one needs it. Soul love will always recognize when there is distress, happiness, joy, or sorrow. It is intuitive, exciting, sometimes hurtful, but always the greatest handful we could ever choose to experience in this life. It’s also the greatest heart fill. It’s a drink of cool water that when partaken of will cause one to never thirst again. It fills the senses, calms human hunger, and is a well of living water that is everlasting.
God’s great desire has always been for us to know the depth, width, and breadth of His love. The only way that can be known is to recognize it within ourselves and then seek it within someone else. We know it when we find it. It was Jesus who said all of those who seek will find, and when we find this type of love is it the greatest love of all time.
Love deep, love wide, and love completely,
Loving you from here,
Dr Rev Jenine Marie Howry