By Layton Dutton

Associate Pastor of Youth

Calvary Baptist Church

Evart

Two weeks ago I wrote about how love is an act of the will. Love is a choice. And last week I related that love is accompanied, not led by, emotion. The last factor in love is action. If I choose to love, I will respond with action on behalf of my object.

Why object and not God or wife? The object can be anyone or anything. If I love God then I will keep His commandments (John 14:15, 1 John 5:3). If I love my wife then I will give myself for her (Ephesians 5:25-28). But if I love money then I will do what it takes to get it. If I love NASCAR then I will leave every weekend for 37 weeks to see all the races on location. Ok, so perhaps there are degrees of love or maybe “like” would better reflect my NASCAR feelings.

Whatever I love will result in action on that object’s behalf. If I say that I love God but I don’t love other Christians, can I say I truly love God? (1 John 4:20) If I say I love God yet refuse to share Christ with them, do I honestly love God, or my neighbor? (Mark 12:31, Matthew 28:19-20)

Love is to be displayed. Love isn’t hidden. My dad shows the object of his love, my mom, that he loves her by vacuuming the floor. He decided 40 years ago to show his love for her by committing to her in marriage and continues to display his love by what he does for her. And though not greatly emotional, his feelings for her can be seen when she is hurt and he cares for her or when she is overjoyed and it makes him happy. He displays his love by responding with action that benefits her, even over himself. “Love is an act of the will accompanied by emotion that leads to action on behalf of its object.”???1

How are you doing at loving God and loving others? Do you follow God’s commands without excuse? Do your actions show that your spouse is valuable?

A husband shows he truly loves his wife by caring for her desires more than his own. In the same way, you would show yourself a true follow of Christ if you cared more about God’s desires than your own.

“Be imitators of Christ….and live a life of love…” (Ephesians 5:1-2)

1 From Dr. Voddie Baucham’s book, “Family Driven Faith”, Chapter 3