A few years ago, when my boys were in elementary school, celebrating Valentine’s Day was the highlight of February. They were so excited to go to the store and pick out just the right cards and treats. They carefully wrote their classmate’s names on them and created a special mailbox to put all the cards that they would receive. I have to admit; I think I enjoyed it more than they did!
I am so thankful for our boy’s school because this just wasn’t a typical Valentine’s party – this was an “Agape Day” party!
In the New Testament, the writers used three different Greek words to speak of love.
- Eros is in reference to erotic or sexual love.
- Philos is the affection a family member or friend. It is never used about a person’s love towards God.
- Agape is God’s unwavering, steadfast, and enduring love for us.
According to Harper’s Bible Dictionary, agape love is, “to designate the unmerited love God shows to humankind in sending his son as suffering redeemer.”*
In today’s blog post, agape love will be the main subject of focus.
This is not the love that you would use to describe your love for coffee, for your favorite food, or even for your husband or children. This is bigger than you can ever fathom. A love so deep for us that in order for us to have eternal life with God, He sent His only Son to save us from our sins.
1 John 4:19
1 John 4:19 is simple and straight-forward, “We love because he first loved us.” As Christians, we are called to love everyone. That needs to be repeated, not only for your sake but for mine – we are called to love everyone. This is extremely hard for me to do, especially when someone hurts a family member – anger and thoughts of revenge tend to rear their ugly head.
So, how do we love? We remember that God’s love for us is unwavering, steadfast, enduring, and unconditional. We hold on to the truth, we grasp the Word, and we pray.
My Challenge to You
Start living like you are loved because you are! The Lord loves us despite our flaws, our sins, and our attitudes.
What can you do today to remind you of this? I have written this verse on notecards and taped them up in the four areas where I spend most of my day: by my computer, on my bathroom mirror, on the kitchen window above the sink, and the dashboard of my car.
I would love for you to comment on this post and let me know what your plan is to remind you that God loves you and that we are called to love others.
Have a blessed day, my friends!
*Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row and Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). In Harper’s Bible Dictionary (1st ed., p. 14). San Francisco: Harper & Row.