To the world, love means “you make me happy.”

It’s a very selfish definition, and one that is destined to fail because at the center it is merely an assessment of how things affect me inside, not you. It’s entirely emotive and based on feelings which can be affected by any number of things.

To God, love means “I’ve seen the crappiest parts of you, and I’m not going anywhere. I’m staying right here with you.”

God’s definition of love is transcendent to the world because His love is in fact a conscious commitment to the objects of His love, rather than an emotional assessment of His happiness or unhappiness. To the Hebrews the word was ahava (אהבה) and it signified “a love of the will”, meaning it was a intentional choice, not an emotional response.

Doesn’t having a definition of love that says “I’m committed to you no matter what” make you feel much more valued, secure, and fulfilled than a love that says “you make me really happy right now, so I’m going to stick around a while longer”?

This is how I endeavor to love my wife, my kids, my friends and every person around me who God puts in my life to love on - and it’s how He deserves to be loved in return.

I’m so thankful that I am loved with Heaven’s love, not the world’s.