“I LOVE this cheese,” I almost said the other day. Then I caught myself, because I’m trying to learn to apply the word “love” to God and people, not things. I think we throw this word around too carelessly these days.
Please understand, I’m glad that we speak more openly about love than we used to. In fact, I grew up in a home where I knew I was loved, but the words were never spoken. No one ever told me I was loved, except God. It’s written very clearly in His Word over and over and I believed it. But when I heard the actual words “I love you” from a boyfriend when we were about 18 years old, it threw me for a loop! I waited until the next day to reciprocate with the same words. By then, he had thought about it, too, and said, “Forget what I said last night. I’m not capable of loving anyone.” I was devastated.
So now I’m careful about how and when I say those three precious words: “I love you.” When someone casually signs off on the phone with “Love ya,” sometimes I answer in kind, and sometimes I don’t. I’m probably overly cautious, but I don’t want to say things out of habit. Only premeditation and respect.
The next time I cut a slice of my favorite cheese, I’ll say,”This cheese is delicious, isn’t it!” Maybe we can all learn to be more precise in our admiration of things and more purposeful in our declarations of love for people. Just think about it. Are there statements you make too casually?