What Is Real Love?

Love. What comes to mind when you think of that word? Many people associate it with their significant other, or maybe their family, or their dog, or even that weird blanket they still hold onto from childhood. The list could go on and on. For many people they think of love as a powerful thing that can fix their lives.

As a sophomore in high school, I see people at school whose lives revolve around their version of love. The kind of love that is temporary. The kind of love that they think will get them at the top of the popularity list. I get it; you want to be cool. You don't want to be that friend that can never get the guy or the girl.

We as humans all have that natural need to feel loved. You think that since you broke up with your boyfriend or girlfriend that your world is about to end. You get angry and say that you will never be able to love again. You say that he broke your heart forever and that he broke all of his promises. And maybe you don't want love just to be popular. Maybe you just want love because you like the way it feels inside. When will you realize that love isn't all that?

Love isn't a feeling, it's a lifestyle that you are called to live.

Love isn't just that "warm, fuzzy feeling" you get. It's so much more than that. It's so much bigger than that.

When I went to Nicaragua last year I got to experience, firsthand, for the first time in my life what real love was. Not that I had never felt love before. I knew that my parents loved me but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the kind of love that makes you want to help others. I'm talking about the kind of love that only one person can give you. That person is God.

When you really begin to have a real relationship with him you can finally understand what real love is. Now don't get me wrong, sometimes God does put a person in your life in high school or when you're younger that he meant for you to share your life with. But I'm willing to bet that 99% of relationships in high school fail mainly because it isn't real love. Mainly because we are so focused on what we can get out of it for ourselves and what it's going to mean to us. I had someone say something to me the other day that hit home. He said, " On a scale of one to ten, how nice would you rate yourself?" He let us think about it for a second and continued by saying, "now did you rate yourself based on how nice you actually were or how mean you weren't?"

If we really think about it, how much love do we have for other people? Do we go through our day and maybe bite our tongue once and automatically push ourselves up another number on our little scale? As a human I struggle with this immensely. I am so quick to let someone get to me and I run to another friend and talk about it. Is this really love? No, it's not.

I guess my point is this: are we going through life seeing what we can get out of it for ourselves or are we genuinely invested in other people? Because I know for a fact that if we really had a relationship with God, we would go through life trying to lift others up, loving on them, and showing them how to love authentically. Our character is not defined by what we say of ourselves but by the way that we live our lives. Are you living your life full of love and life giving words or are you going through life seeing how much you can get it of it and how much you can gain?

Written by Deanna Shetler

Bio: Deanna Shetler is a girl who loves Jesus, friends, and coffee, but most importantly Jesus. She is 16 years old and lives in Ohio. Her hobbies include acting, singing, and being am ambassador for Christ.