Compassionate Love: Displaying Compassion for Those Who Struggle with Mental Illness or Abuse (c)2013 Nancy Virden, Always The Fight Ministries
In Christine’s search for love, trouble never had difficulty finding her. She fell for the lie of love from strangers and family. Finally she married a man who said his love was for forever, yet even then was knowingly deceitful.
Is it any wonder Christine does not know what real love is?
Love is not, Love is
Love is not a claim of love. Love is not warm fuzzy feelings.
Love is a choice to care about another person. Love is an action, it is truth, it never fails.
That is not to say we do not let loved ones down. We will because we are human. Love is a continuous desire to not fail, and does not disappear when times are rough. Love stops doing what is wrong and learns to do what is right.
Fuzzy warm feelings may disintegrate; love will remain. It may look different, but is active and true. For example, a broken marriage does not have to end in bitterness.
Love is not martyrdom or playing the doormat. It is not giving someone everything they want. Love stands up for what is best.
3 test cases
(1) Her husband calls. Audrey hesitates to answer the phone because she knows what will come of it. Her unemployed status has disappointed him. He will assume the position of her boss by informing her exactly how she is failing.
Does he love her?
(2) Andrew ducks every time he walks through that door. His mother used to hide behind it and swat him when he returned from school. She passed away last year, and the duty of cleaning up her estate fell to him. Even after several months he continues to tense for a sprint at the sight of that door.
Did she ever love him?
(3) Anna enjoys her adult children and rejoices in their independence. She made mistakes as a parent, yet was willing to listen to her children’s points of view. No one had been swatted from behind doors, or insulted for mistakes. She grins as she recalls all the spilled milk. No one had been made to feel a fool.
Did she, does she love them?
My opinion: According to a professional source, the first two stories are examples of people loving the best they know how. I disagree. Story three matches that description better.
I am not willing to call abuse love at all. While no one loves perfectly, love is not selfish. Damaging behavior committed in a reckless and thoughtless manner is selfish. Not considering another person’s pain (or joys) is selfish.
Warm fuzzy feelings may come and go, yet ignoring a person’s plea to stop treating them a certain way because it hurts them, is definitely selfish.
What do you think?
Today’s Helpful Word
Romans 13: 8-10
The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”[ Love does no harm to a neighbor…
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NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental and behavioral health challenges. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. (for international emergency numbers, go here ), or go to your nearest emergency room. Do not be alone. Hope and help are yours.
*all names have been changed