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Love Lessons

December 16, 2015

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There are people who can say they love you but only discourage and drain you. There are people who can say they care about you but not be there for you. There are people who can say they support you but never show up for you. There are people who can say they are trying to protect you but only hurt you. There are people who can say they want you to be happy but bring you great pain. There are people who can say they miss you but never reach out, call or text you. Love isn’t the issue, but how we define it is. In my experience, I have found that the quality of love says a lot about the character of a person~ only exceptional people can love. Please know, it takes guts to love. The fearful cannot love because their fear weakens them. The doubtful cannot love because their doubts imprison them. The cynical cannot love because their warped perspective on life deceives them. The jealous, the proud and the bitter cannot love because they are weighed down by the chains of unresolved issues. Only the brave can love. Only those who are at peace with their purpose can appreciate and celebrate the purpose of another.

Real, quality love isn’t always romantic, it can be a parent-child bond, a friendship, or sibling love~ but it doesn’t even need to speak, it is spoken for, just by its aura. Real love will strip you of your defensive ways and allow you to be vulnerable but it will never make you feel unsafe. When you see it, quality love is so endearing, so pure, and so desirable that you finally understand why people go across the globe in search for it; why some give up everything in pursuit of it and why others never really live if they don’t have it. Quality love is unlike anything on earth. It is innocent and pure like a love of a child; it is passionate like a love of a mother; it is protective like a father watching out for his daughter; it is deep like sibling love, it is selfless like a friend’s love~ it is a reflection of God’s immeasurable love. It’s not flamboyant, it is deep and consistent. It’s not loud, it is captivating. It’s not arrogant, it is humble. It’s not judgmental, it is forgiving. It’s not pretentious, it is incredibly genuine. It’s not trying too hard, it is graciously content. It inspires, it encourages, it heals, and if you ever come across it, you will know it.

 

We are very good at telling others how to love us but we aren’t nearly as good at taking inventory of our own quality of love.
We know all the qualities that we want in someone else but we rarely consider what qualities we ourselves must first possess for us to deserve someone as equally amazing. We’ve learnt to be vocal about what others must be but we don’t consider the importance of first looking within us for this change. This year, nothing has challenged me more than learning how to love; not just with words, but loving primarily with actions. We grow up thinking that loving our friends and families should be easy but the reality is, all relationships are taxing. They require time, effort and attention in order to develop and grow, otherwise they are doomed to fail. If fed with the right things, our relationships do more than just offer us fun and excitment but they also give us a safe place to go to when days are dark.
When 2015 started, I made a conscious decision to discover what love is and what it’s not…and to learn how to love better~ in a way that is liberating and not selfish or draining.
Here is what I learnt:

 

Being Faithful

It’s amazing to me that when we talk about this word (faithful) we carelessly ignore the first five letters of that word and the meaning those letters carry~ faith. Sadly, we have reduced the meaning of faithfulness to merely not cheating. But it is so much more than that.
It is so much more than not straying.
Being faithful means what I have is also yours to possess, my darling. It means I will give you the best of me first and the world will always come second. It means my heart can be trusted not to waver when the conditions no longer suit me. I will remain full of faith where we are concerned… Faithful means you’re finally safe my love.

 

Patience is crucial

Nothing says I love you quite like patience. In fact, I am convinced that patience is love’s most sophisticated language.
It says more than just, “I will wait for you.” Patience says, I won’t get bored, irritated or develop a nasty attitude while I wait. Patience understands that people aren’t perfect but this doesn’t disqualify them from being loved. Patience says, I am here to help and inspire you to be better without constantly telling you how flawed you are. Patience is love at its best, it sees you for what you can be.

 

Forgive quickly

To forgive is to pardon one’s mistakes and not hold their errors against them. To forgive is to let go of one’s missteps without feeling the need to punish them for bad judgment. It’s to understand that imperfections make us human but they are not the most important thing about us.
To forgive is to let go of offense knowing that even though I will get bruised because my beloved and I won’t always agree, it is not my beloved’s intention to bring me pain. To forgive is to accept the person you love entirely. To forgive is to give your lover room to err without them having to get punished for being human.

 

In all Honesty

The integrity of love is carefully guarded by honesty. Love thrives where there is truth. Love enjoys telling the truth. Love is so respectful that it cannot tell a lie. Quality love is so respectful that it doesn’t mind dishing out the truth rather than hurting you by being pretentious.

Love suffocates where there are lies, fibs and half-truths. Love isn’t scared of the truth, as ugly as it may be. Love isn’t threatened, hurt or broken by honesty, in fact, it is strengthened by it. What weakens love however are the lies…and the things we don’t say, the details we omit and the information we withhold. What we don’t realize is; love wants the truth. Even if it is angry, or disappointed, love wants to hear the truth because the truth sets free!

 

Quality of love

I want my love to be good quality~ the kind of love that forgives even if an apology doesn’t come. A love so extravagant that it is not hindered by offense, jealousy or a careless word spoken. A love that knows how to put kindness ahead of pride, faith before fear and peace ahead of anger. A love that knows how to celebrate others without feeling insignificant, a love that doesn’t mind holding someone up because it is focused on being a helping hand, a blessing and an asset. A love that doesn’t guilt-trip, condemn or judge. That’s the standard I’m holding myself to~ that is the quality of love I pray my heart will produce.

 

A wonderful 2016 to you. May you leave a trail of love everywhere you go~ genuine love, unconditional love, quality love.
Love and light,
Nono Cele
Twitter: @Nono_Cele
Email: nono@nonocele.co.za

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