Grace Episcopal Church
Loving God by Loving Others
By Rev. Caroline Osborne
Have you ever heard of the five love languages? They were made famous by Gary Chapman’s book of the same name, in which he argues that there are five basic ways that people show and receive love. According to Chapman, figuring out your love languages and those of your spouse can be a great way to build a healthy marriage because you are learning better how to express your love in a way that the other person will feel the fullness of it. The five love languages are words of affirmation, physical affection, gifts, quality time, and acts of service.
Our spouses, if we have them, are not the only people we are called to love. We were made to love God and can only be fully happy and complete when we rest in his love. And when we abide in God’s love, that love will overflow in our lives and be expressed as love for others.
While Gary Chapman’s love languages are not the only way of understanding love, they do offer a helpful way of thinking it through. How are you living out your love for God? There are ways we can do these things directly (except physical touch), such as spending time in prayer or volunteering in church, but Jesus also makes it clear that the ways we treat others, especially those in need, are part of how we live out our love for him.
Right now, there are abundant needs in our community, our country, and the world. With the effects of the pandemic in full swing, there are many, many places where we can act out of our love for God by showing that love to the least, the last, and the lost. What can you do? Can you donate your time? Can you give of your money or resources? Can you send words of encouragement? Can you meet physical needs? How can you serve someone?
Where are you living out your love for God by loving others?
If you don’t know where to start, contact us at Grace for some ideas.
“…for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” – Matthew 25:35-36