I suspect many of you reading this think I have gone a little bonkers and
are wondering why a half-eaten pack of ready pancakes could possibly
suggest love but they do.
One of my eight-year-olds had a pancake or two for her breakfast before I
got up and instead of leaving them open on the side to go hard, she got a
bag out the drawer and covered them up. She cared enough to emulate me and
to tidy away and make sure they were still good for the next person who
That person was my son, four years older than my daughters but did he put
the pack back in the bag to keep them fresh? Of course not, it didn’t
even occur to him, he just left them on the side and the crumbs everywhere,
confident in the knowledge that Mum would do it.
So back to the original question – what is love? Well for me love is
often an action. It is something that a person chooses to do, it isn’t
always a feeling. That day love was about making an effort and going out of
her way to make things better for the next person. That kind of love took
thought and effort and it pleased me immensely.
I’ve often wondered about love as an action, especially in marriage. You
hear so often nowadays of people getting divorced because they do not ‘feel’
in love anymore and personally I think that you have to put hard work
into marriageand choose to love each other. Of course, there are times when you
are bubbling over with love but equally I’ve found in the last twenty-odd
years that there are times when I do not have those feeling so much.
I recall a while back speaking to some older friends who had fostered
children for years about how it must be difficult to deal with some children
and how do you show them love, so they can feel secure? They assured me that
if you treated them the same as your own child and you carried on as if you
loved them the child would feel the love and gain the reassurance and
security they needed. ou didn’t always have to actually love them, just ‘act
Then this morning at church we were again exploring the book of Ephesians
and one of our pastors was talking about how God loves us and dwells in us
and this got me thinking about love as an action and I realised that there
are two ways to love someone. There is the all-encompassing unconditional
way that God loves us and I love my children and there is also the love that
we make an effort to show, the love as an action. Like making a cup of
coffee for my husband even when he has been a grouch all day or helping my
girls to tidy their rooms even when they have been back chatting.
So it is OK that sometimes I don’t feel an overwhelming love for everyone
in my life, I can choose not to be led by my feelings and make an
intentional decision to act out love.