We continue to reflect on the list of common values that make civilizations great. Those values are: Wisdom, Integrity, Love, Freedom, Justice, Courage, Humility, Patience, Industriousness, Thriftiness, Generosity, Objectivity, Cooperation, Moderation and Optimism.
It has been described as an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. Love is also a virtue or value, representing all of human kindness, compassion, and affection; and the unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another.
It has been the most written and talked about value of all, (this is one of them). It has also been one of the most misunderstood of all. Every human being has an opinion of what it represents for them. But unarguably, we are wired to love and be loved; It is in our DNA. Many have written about the subject because of the internal pursuit of happiness we all are looking for. Paul in 1 Corinthians 13, wrote extensively about love and pointed out that above all of the virtues, love was the greatest. Jesus himself in the verse quoted above, commanded it. There are many expressions of what love is, and Jesus himself said that to give one’s life is the greatest expression of them all. This he said of himself, giving his life for our sins.
Yet many have tried to define how it should be done or what form it should take. At one point Jesus was tested and was asked: “Of all the commandments, which is the most important? Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: Listen, O Israel! The LORD our God is the one and only LORD. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. The second is equally important: Love your neighbor as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these.”
And it is on this expression that hinges the key to our nations. Love may be understood as part of the survival instinct, a function to keep human beings together against menaces and to facilitate the continuation of the species. To care, appreciate, consider, value and love our neighbor as ourselves. So if we have a poor vision of who we are, we will be incapable of loving the way we were created for. Many expressions of love today, come from a distorted view of ourselves, and as such we treat our neighbors. So in order to affect our community and our nation, we need to love ourselves first, in a healthy way. Jesus was the epitome of the expression of love.
I told you that Paul had written about love. In his letter to the Corinthians he taught what love looked like: Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Do you really love? Let’s practice: change in these verses your name instead of the word “love” and read it to yourself. Can you say that you are patient and kind? Not boastful or jealous? I know myself that I still have to work a lot on this, how about you?
If we want a great nation, let’s follow his command: Love each other.
“BREATHE expectantly, LIVE confidently and MOVE Boldly”
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© Copyright Danny Maldonado, 2012