To love and be loved is a basic human need. This communication begins immediately in the mother’s womb. The experience of nurture, caring and safe boundaries is the foundation of love for a child. Love does not take merely a romantic form, like in most love songs. There are many everyday ways to show love.
Author and Therapist Gary Chapman speaks of the five languages of love. Practically, then, it means that every person is able to love in a way that is unique to them. These five languages of love are: words of affirmation, acts of service, receiving gifts, quality time, and physical touch. According to Chapman, a person often has one language of love above others to show love. Yet everyone can learn to show and receive love in many different ways. Some of us show love primarily by speaking kind, encouraging words. For others, love means more practical deeds. For example, someone likes to cook for a family or a larger group, and thus shows their love. The Finnish man who doesn’t talk much, but repairs, renovates and go to the groceries, does acts of service. For some, the characteristic language of love is giving gifts, remembering friends’ birthdays, and paying attention to another by giving something special to them. The fourth language of love is quality time. Time spent together is a way to show and receive love. The fifth language of love, according to Chapman, is physical touch. This means more than just romantic intimacy. To some it is natural to hug, pat on the shoulder, or have a warm hand shake. Especially in a relationship, it is good to get to know what kind of the love language each of them uses, and what the other person and themselves need. The confusion can come from not noticing the needs of the spouse but thinking they are similar to themselves.
Fortunately, you can learn the languages of love, as you do with other languages. “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1. John 4:9-11
Have a Blessed Summer! Pastor Timo
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