What is love?
In our house, we decided to turn learning about love into what I call “The Real Love Game.”
So many movies, books, magazines, songs, and TV shows have attempted to answer this question. Although some of the answers (like Saturday Night Live’s skit versions) are obviously not the right answer, there are many others that have added confusion to an already confused world.
The Real Definition of Love
That is why 1 Corinthians 13 is one of my favorite passages. In black and white, it explains what love – real love – looks like.
Love is patient,
love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast,
it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others,
it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects,
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Every year when February rolls around and LOVE starts to fill the air and the store shelves, we try to instill God’s meaning of love in our hearts as well as our children’s hearts. We do this so that as they grow and are introduced to the things of this world, they will know the difference between real love and fake love.
The Real LOVE Game & Different Ways of Teaching our Kids about Real Love
Now, stop for a second. Did you notice anything really interesting? If you’re a numbers person, you might…within verses 4-7 there are fourteen different descriptions of love. One for every day from February 1-Valentines Day! A few years ago, when I noticed this, we made a point to make sure every morning when our children woke up a heart with one of these descriptions was hanging somewhere in the house.
There are so many different ways to play with these hearts:
- For several years, we hung them on a Valentine wreath in the living room.
- We’ve even given them to our children like Valentines from God, one a day from February 1st-14th.
- Last year we hung them on our kitchen window, where we do our school work during the day.
- This year, I decided we are going to play a game with it. Every morning when our children wake up, they will go searching for love! Because isn’t that what most of us have done in life? As we are growing up, aren’t we always on the look out for true love? Once they find the heart, we will sit and talk about what it means and memorize it. Then we can add it to our memory verse wall so we can add to it daily and by day 14 we will have these three verses memorized.
- I actually plan on having two sets of these hearts. One set to hide and hang up and the other set to use as a memory verse scramble. Every time we add another heart the kids will mix up the hearts and then put them in the correct order.
- What immediately pops into your mind?
Let Us Know How Your Family Plays the Real Love Game!
If you would like to play this game with us or your own version, here are the fourteen hearts. We would love to see how you use them. Share your ideas with us by posting to social media and using #CaGDRealLove
Not only do we want our kids to know what love is, but we want them to know where it is found: in Christ Jesus. If we are letting Jesus fill our hearts with His love, then we will not be easily swayed by the world. And we want them to know how to share his love too.
Craving God’s Love
There is a song by For King and Country called “The Proof of Your Love” that recites parts of 1 Corinthians 13. So many people who have only heard this song and have never read the Bible have come up to them and said how amazing and beautiful those words are and how that idea of love just captivates them. You see, the world is craving God’s love and they don’t even know it yet!
As we play this game with our kids, maybe we could also sprinkle some of these hearts around our neighborhoods too. Share God’s amazing love with our neighbors, with store clerks and with whomever we run into during the day. Just for fun one day maybe you could go love on some cars by putting these hearts under windshield wipers in a parking lot. You never know how that little heart just might open someone’s heart to God’s word now or later.
Lord, we thank you for loving us like you do. We absolutely do not deserve it and yet you give it freely and without reserve. Your mercy and grace are showered upon us daily. Our hearts sing songs of thanksgiving and praise for all the love you have bestowed upon us. Give us courage to freely share this amazing love with others. In the One who did not hesitate to show what true love is all about – Amen!