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Summary: Love is a universal desire that every human heart craves for. From an infant to the oldest man, we all desire to love and be loved.

Love is a universal desire that every human heart craves for. From an infant to the oldest man, we all desire to love and be loved.

Solomon put it this way: Song of Songs? ?8:6-7? ?GNT??

“Close your heart to every love but mine; hold no one in your arms but me. Love is as powerful as death; passion is as strong as death itself. It bursts into flame and burns like a raging fire. Water cannot put it out; no flood can drown it. But if any tried to buy love with their wealth, contempt is all they would get.”

Love can not be bought. It’s not for sale. It is purely a thing of the will.

In this series, I will be looking at God’s kind of love. How we can develop it, express, share and experience it ourselves. But first, let’s look at the four types of love by Greek philosophers. Agape; Philia; Storge; Eros.

Agape is a sacrificial and unconditional love. Agape accepts people for who they are regardless of their flaws, shortcomings or faults. This love is a decision you make to love a person even though You may not like them. It is all about sacrifice as well as giving and expecting nothing in return. It is a choice you make to be committed to a person or people as demonstrated by your behavior towards them.

Philia Love is affectionate or brotherly love. It is tender or warm love towards a platonic friend.

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Storge love is family/friendship love. It's the natural love of parents to children or between family members. It’s unconditional, accepts flaws or faults and helps you to easily forgive. It’s sacrificial, committed, and makes you feel comfortable, secure, and safe.

Eros is a passionate romantic love; It is simply an emotional and sexual love. Because human emotions and feelings are never stable, they are affected by situations, circumstances, hormonal imbalance, etc. therefore love based on Eros alone will not last hence the high level of divorce we see in society today.

For a healthy, balanced and stable personality, we need to experience all four levels of love and to have had the opportunity to reciprocate the same to others.

Among these four levels of love, agape is the most difficult to experience and to express. Humans are incapable of expressing agape love unless helped by God. This is why Agape love is only found among Christians. It is poured out in our hearts at the point of salvation in a seed form. It requires nurturing and constant practice for it to mature to the point where it can be expressed.

Apostle Paul puts it this way: Romans? ?5:5? ?GNT??

“This hope does not disappoint us, for God has poured out his love into our hearts by means of the Holy Spirit, who is God's gift to us.”

We know genuine Christians have the agape love of God in them. The question is why do we find it hard to show this love to ourselves?

My answer is that understanding the components of agape love and the obstacles to practicing this love is the key to unlocking our ability to practice it. I also believe that when we understand the components and study how to overcome the obstacles to loving God’s way, backed up by prayers, the body of Christ will be able to fully demonstrate God’s love to one another and to the world at large.

To be continued in Part 2.

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