“Love is a many splendored thing,” says the outdated tune. Love has many hues, many shades, many aspects. Love has many options to look at, many marvels to behold. There may be a lot to like that none of us can ever expertise it in all its types. Not even shut. But whereas none of us can ever expertise it in all its types, we actually do have the pleasure of experiencing it in many of its types. Do you ever pause to think about all of the completely different loves you expertise?
Simply think about a number of the completely different types of love inside a single family. The love of a husband for his spouse. The love of a spouse for her husband. The love of a father for his daughter. The love of a father for his son. The love of a daughter for her father. The love of a son for his father. The love of a mom for her daughter. The love of a mom for her son. The love of a daughter for her mom. The love of a son for his mom. The love of a brother for a sister. The love of a brother for a brother. The love of a sister for a brother. The love of a sister for a sister. Every of those loves is completely different of their emotions, their affections, their expectations. Some are gentler and a few are fiercer. Some are marked by sobriety and a few by silliness. However all are true. All are love.
And we don’t want to finish there. We might converse of the particular love of a father or mom for a kid marked by particular wants. And we might flip it round to talk of the particular love of a disabled little one for her father, mom, siblings, and buddies—a love that might be completely different in a toddler with extreme developmental abnormalities than in a toddler with gentle Down syndrome. But who hasn’t remarked on the distinctive love towards and from these with disabilities?
We might add to it the distinctive love of fogeys for his or her adopted kids, the love of organic kids for his or her adopted siblings, the love of adopted kids for his or her organic siblings, and the love of adopted kids for his or her dad and mom. We might add even to that the distinctive love of adopted kids for his or her organic dad and mom whom they might have identified or who could at all times stay unknown, however nonetheless liked. And, in fact, we might converse of the particular love of foster dad and mom for his or her foster kids, or the particular love of foster kids for his or her many foster dad and mom, the many individuals they might have known as “mom” and “dad” by way of the years as they’ve tag-teamed the duty of parenting.
We might converse of the love of a mom who has married a widower and adopted his kids, making them her personal. Isn’t this a number of the sweetest love of all—a girl who steps in not simply out of affection and concern for a person, however out of affection and concern for his entire household? Or we might converse of the love of a step-mother who has married right into a household marked by divorce and who expresses love for her husband’s kids by rigorously treading the road between caring for them whereas not pushing herself into the place rightfully nonetheless held by their mom.
All that is love, and we haven’t even moved exterior of a single family. What if we add grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins to the combo? Who can doubt the particular love that grandparents have for his or her grandchildren and the particular affection grandchildren really feel towards their dad and mom’ dad and mom? What if we transfer from the Western world to different cultures the place the nuclear and prolonged households blur in a means unfamiliar to many people, the place aunts and uncles are practically the equal of mothers and dads?
What if we transfer exterior the household altogether and think about friendships? The love of a person for an additional man. The love of a girl for an additional lady. The peerlessly applicable love of a person for a girl who will not be his spouse, and the superbly applicable love of a girl for a person who will not be her husband. Don’t you will have buddies of the alternative gender to whom you’ll be able to say, “I love you” with out the least awkwardness or shade of sexual double-meaning? The love of a married couple for an additional married couple. The love of a person for his pal’s kids. The love of kids for his or her dad and mom’ buddies. A few of my most valuable moments are seeing my kids loving my buddies and being liked by them in return.
What if we transfer from friendships to the native church? How might we even start to qualify or quantify all of the love we see there? The love of a pastor for his congregation. The love of a congregation for its pastor. The love of a deacon for the widow, the poor, the unemployed, the disabled. The love of a Sunday faculty trainer for the younger kids she teaches. The love of younger kids for his or her nursery employees. The love of an elder for his fellow elder. The love of an elder for the deacon who frees him up for the ministry of Phrase and prayer. The love of a complete congregation for the guests who simply walked by way of the door. It simply by no means ends! It by no means stops. We can not attain the tip of affection. We can not describe all of its many types, every completely different from all of the others, however every genuinely love.
And, in fact, we’ve not but instructed of the love of God for man and man for God. We’ve not but instructed of the love of God for God, the final word love, the timeless love, the love that existed earlier than time, earlier than place, earlier than matter, earlier than man. That is the love from which all others proceed, the fountain that feeds each different river and stream of affection. The God who loves created a world of affection. What a pleasure it’s to reside on this world, his world, and to expertise love as each a giver and a receiver of its infinite types.