• We desperately want what we cannot have, but we look down on what we can’t get rid of. We long for the inaccessible, but too often we despise what is within our grasp. How exactly do all these apply to a relationship? Is there such thing as true love? Or is it just a dream?
Most people agree that without love we cannot live together, we cannot accept each other. Love is essential in every kind of action of ours; it is the very essence of life itself, God Himself is Love. We were created with this hunger for love within us, hunger to love and be loved in return. God’s love is secure, dependable and constant and He intended for us to have the same kind of security in the frames He established for the whole manifestation of true love, which is marriage. God intended sexual relationships between a man and a woman only within the safety of marriage.
To have a very good, intimate relationship with another person in the terms of godly love is what true love is; to share one’s thoughts, one’s feelings with each other. Love implies more than just verbal declaration of feelings, it means trying to fulfill somebody else’s needs of acceptance, significance, affection and so on. For this reason, true love is not passive, it’s active! “Love is a verb”, as a song goes. Love goes beyond feelings, beyond certain sensations, physical attraction and it takes effort, commitment, dedication, and sometimes even sacrifice.
However, these days many couples end up in divorce and that occurs because they do not really understand what true love is. They have a misconception on love. They think love is nothing but a feeling that comes to you, a feeling which cannot be controlled, it as a force that wraps you up and you have no chance to escape it.
Can love at first sight turn out to be true love?
It might be better or safer to say “attraction at first site”. However, perhaps the greatest factor leading to a true kind of love is time. It takes time to truly know, understand, accept and in just one simple word, love somebody else in all honesty and truth. False love turns cheap all true principles of real love.
The ones involved in a false love relationship are not interested in each others’ feelings and emotions, nor interested in spending too much time with the other person, or in the other person’s expectations. The only thing that matters in false love is for the other person to fulfill one’s personal needs, and that is about it. There is, however, attraction at first sight, but not love at first sight. In order to love somebody, you have to get to know that person, to communicate with that person, to make friends, to build “bridges” between two different people, two different worlds.
How can you tell if the other person truly loves you or not?
Perhaps the most important evidence is given by the way the other person acts in certain circumstances, such as illness, distance, etc. True love truly finds the unique value of the beloved person and treasures it dearly trough words and actions accompanying those feelings. There are many people one may like, but there is only one person that truly completes oneself, that really helps you become one.
Is love a feeling, a physical attraction, and a desire to be with someone? How could we express love?
All of the above mentioned elements are but facets of real love because real love includes them all, yet real love goes deeper than that, to commitment, to sacrifice. Unfortunately, love is limited for many people to mere physical attraction. Young people are generally prone to fall inside this trap. A young person may feel attraction towards a nice-looking person of the opposite sex. Sometimes that attraction can really turn into true love, but, unfortunately, most of the times it turns out to be a mistake on both sides.
What could we look for in the other person, to make sure what we feel is true love?
Generally, we should consider one’s character, qualities such as kindness, sensitivity, capacity to understand others and himself/herself, and anything that can complete us. There should be a perfect communication, that goes beyond words, and fully acceptance of each other, with all the qualities and shortcomings any human being may have. In time, the sense of commitment, of mutual connection, mutual communication and trust should increase. It is what William Shakespeare tried and succeeded in saying in one of his sonnets: “Let me not to the marriage of true minds/Admit impediments. Love is not love/Which alters when it alteration finds/Or binds with the remover to remove:/O no! It an ever-fixed mark/That looks on tempests and is never shaken If this be error, and upon me proved/I never writ, nor no man ever loved./”