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Loving by Choice: The Seven Action Series

Jim and ShelleyMy wife and I returned today from camping in the California foothills. It was a beautiful weekend and we spent most of it around the campfire with other family members. Several times this weekend I was reminded of the love my wife has for me by the little things she did: covering me when I was cold, cuddling by the fire, and laughing at my lame jokes. After 21 years of marriage, we realize that love is not about a sweeping romantic feeling. Love is the day-to-day giving of yourself to someone else.

It concerns me when we are told through the media and society that love is about the pounding of the heart when you see someone for the first time. Love is much more than an primal reaction to a sexual stimulus. That, my friends, is lust. Not that our God-given sexual desire is bad, but it’s not love.

Love is something that is nurtured and grows between two people who care for the wellbeing of each other. We choice to love just as we choice not to love. Love is also making ourselves vulnerable to the fact that we may not receive love in return. But love is not about receiving; love is about giving.

I love my wife and my family deeply. That love is not always strongly felt; but that feeling of love is in direct proportion to what I have invested. The more I give of myself, the more I am loved in return.

We need to let go of this crazy notion that love is a chemical reaction sparked by a chance encounter. Love is a choice; the giving of ourselves.

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