What’s True Love?

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By C.E. Hilbert

“And wuv, tru wuv, will fowow you foweva…
So tweasure your wuv.”
The Princess Bride (1987)

I adore this quote from the cult classic Princess Bride. But, really what is “true love“?

Is it the feeling that a mother has for her newborn? Is it that moment when you realize that your life is incomplete without another person? Is it the first sip of morning coffee? Is it the sound of skates on the ice rushing toward a puck in a hockey game?

In order to understand the truth in this beautiful four letter word, we need to go to the source of love – Jesus.

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” — 1 John 3:16 (NIV)

I have a hard time equating this kind of love with the feeling I have for hockey. Hockey is awesome – but I’m not prepared to lay my life down for the Blue Jackets (particularly with the season they are having). Similar to my current feeling for the Jackets, the love this world tends to embrace is centered on self: “what’s in it for me”.

“Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.” — 1 John 2:15-17 (NLT)

The love we reference in common language has nothing to do with the love God has for us. His love is at the center of why Christ made the sacrifice of leaving Heaven and all of its Glory to walk amongst man and ultimately lay his life down so that each of us could one day be in a loving relationship with Him. Talk about letting your actions speak the words of TRUE LOVE.

The Greek word AGAPE translates to the epitome of true love: love with no strings attached. “I love you because you are you – not because of what you do.”

“Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.” — 1 John 3:18 (NLT)

When you love this way – when you love the way Jesus loves – you find that the experience transcends mere words.

In the Princess Bride, director Rob Reiner tried to give us a glimpse of what this unconditional, no strings attached, service love looked like in our hero and heroine: Wesley and Buttercup. Wesley consistently shows his love to Buttercup with his selfless actions responding only with: “As you wish”; a reminder to his beloved that her needs are above his.

How like the actions of our great beloved:

“He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.””— Matthew 26:39 (NLT)

We are called to love each other the way Jesus loves us. To love the Lord the way He loves.

To say to Him, “As you wish…”

Courtney_HilbertC.E. Hilbert, BA Business, Economics/International Politics. She works in Columbus, OH, in the fashion retailing industry by day and writes romantic fiction by night with golden retriever Daisy at her side. A half-crazed NHL hockey fan, C.E. owns a 110-year-old fixer-upper and believes that life goes best with Jesus, SportsCenter and a pretty pair of shoes.

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