Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Love. The most powerful force on earth. We all know it; some of us lean into it, others afraid to be hurt, so they don’t extend too much of it. But there are different kinds of love, and they all have definitions. C.S. Lewis wrote a book, The Four Loves. I haven’t read it, but as I was digging and learning, it came up several times. I might purchase it and give it a read.
There are said to be four kinds of love: Storge, Philia, Eros, Agape.
Storge is the empathy bond. Liking someone because of your similarities, familiarity, otherwise found of each other because you’ve been bonded by chance. It’s a strong kind of love. Like the love, you may feel for your family members. An example is the natural love and affection of a parent for their child. It is described as the most natural, emotive, and widely diffused of loves.
Philia is the friend bond. Lewis describes it as one of the most beautiful and powerful kinds loves to exist because it’s freely chosen. He notes that friendship in the modern world is often overlooked. But it should be noted how powerful it truly is. Think about how much love goes into a relationship when you get to pick the people you want to have around you.
Eros is the romantic kind of love. The feeling of loving someone or being in love. It’s beautiful as God designed us to marry and build a family. But it can be dangerous too, as you can turn someone into a god. Anyone who’s had a toxic ex knows exactly what that may feel like.
The final kind of love is Agape love or unconditional love. This is the love God has for us. Unconditional and never changing. No matter what we do, His love for us will never cease. This is the hardest one for us to understand because it is nearly impossible for us to feel this. We can get angry at others, turn away from them when we do not agree with their choices, but God doesn’t. He can’t because His love for us is Agape love. It’s the greatest of the four, the most powerful, and you’ve been given this kind of love.
This month may not be everyone’s favorite, as we all walk different paths. You may be on the search for Eros, but we’ve all been given Agape love. I’m excited to continue to uncover what scripture has to say about this beautiful emotion, action, and choice that we all get to partake in daily.
Today’s takeaway is simple, look at these different kinds of love and take note of the people who fit these different categories. Be thankful you have them in your life. Reach out to them if you can.
Jesus, we are excited to uncover all that you have to say about love. We know that you so loved the world that you gave your only son. We are what to dive deeper into what that truly means. I love you; we love you; we thank you for the different people, bonds, and loves we have in our life. It’s the very thing that keeps us kind, genuine, and human. We pray you to bless us this day. In your holy name, we pray, Amen!
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