What is love?
A. Ray Lee
February has long been known as the season in which romance is celebrated in various ways. Customs have greatly changed in my lifetime. When I entered school in the early 1940s valentines were given to friends. The most popular students might receive dozens while others received two or three. As I became older, I only sent a card to a special person. It was a custom that had a deeper meaning.
I will admit that I have been called a Romanticist. I like a good story with a happy ending. I miss those movies where the cowboy wins the reluctant young lady and they overcome all obstacles and live happily ever after. Maybe that is why Grit is one of my most-watched TV channels.
Recently I listened to a panel of young affluent ladies discuss whether or not Valentine’s cards were adequate for the occasion or should it be noted in more expensive ways. The opinion of those participating seemed to be that sentiments of love could be expressed in more meaningful ways than words on a card.
A well-known organization’s appeal for funds during February asks an ages-old question—what is love? Their answer is found in the replies of several children with special physical needs for which they have been provided treatment. The answers given are as individual as the particular help the children have received. As I rejoice with those whose lives have been made easier by the gifts of others, I am reminded of the words of a seminary professor in a Social Ethics class when he stated “it is easier to illustrate love than it is to define it.”
Those who have attempted to define love have long sought for the correct words. Philosophers have written volumes on love and its various expressions. The Greeks used a number of words denoting love. Theologians have tried to grasp the magnitude of God’s love for man. Poets have written of romantic love in eloquent ways with heart-felt words. All seem to agree that love is best expressed by the giving of one’s self for another’s good.
Genuine love is truly demonstrated in the giving of self. Kist as our Savior showed when He gave himself for us.