Defining True Love

What is “true love?”

For many, true love takes many different shapes, forms and definitions.

For me, true love is unconditional and selfless.

But as I struggle in trying to process my definition of true love and how it plays out in my relationship, I saw this story on the news this morning.

Ally Smith with fiance Mike Babineaux on TODAY.

Ally Smith, 22, is now known as the bionic bride. Ally, suffers from cardiomyopathy – more commonly known as, heart muscle disease.

When Ally’s medical condition took a turn for the worse and her life was in jeopardy, her boyfriend, Mike Babineaux, didn’t let that affect his love for her. Ally even insisted that Mike break up with her and forget about her because she realized that in all reality, she might not be alive and around to enjoy a life and future with him.

Do you know what Mike did?

He proposed to Ally.

And when Ally tried to return the engagement ring to Mike, he refused to take it back.

“[Mike] told me even if I was on my deathbed, he was still going to marry me,” a tearful Ally told NBC.

“I just love her, and no one in my life could replace her,” Mike told Matt Lauer on TODAY Wednesday. “I wanted to see it through to the end, all the way.”

Ally eventually got a bionic heart transplant and now instead of planning a funeral, Ally and Mike are planning their wedding.

Wow.

Now that’s true love.

Being able to stay in a relationship, love someone, when things get rough and aren’t easy is hard enough for any couple, but throw in the possibility of losing your mate…that’s love on a completely different level isn’t it?

There are countless stories of true love withstanding the test of time, trials and tribulations.

These stories aren’t like the fairy tales of old.

These stories are filled with pain, hurt, despair, hopelessness, uncertainty, confusion, betrayal, mistrust and a myriad of other words…yet, the ending is the same, the couple conquered all those obstacles and managed to stay together…their love stronger than before the battles.

Mike demonstrated the definition of true love.

What a lucky and blessed woman Ally is to have a man like Mike who truly loves her.

Instead of trying to define love for myself or entertain others’ definitions, I turned to the one and only opinion/definition that matters to me…God’s.

The Greatest Gift

1 Corinthians 13, New King James Version

1 “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.

2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;

5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;

6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;

7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.

9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part.

10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

So God’s definition of love is as follows:

  1. Love suffers long
  2. Love is kind
  3. Love does not envy
  4. Love does not parade itself
  5. Love is not puffed up
  6. Love does not behave rudely
  7. Love does not seek its own
  8. Love is not provoked
  9. Love thinks no evil
  10. Love does not rejoice in iniquity
  11. Love rejoices in the truth
  12. Love bears all things
  13. Love believes all things
  14. Love hopes all things
  15. Love endures all things
  16. Love never fails
  17. Love is greater than faith and hope.

Now, that’s a long list.

I also find it interesting that this verse is mentioned when describing love:

“When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” 1 Corinthians 13:11 (NKJV)

What I took from this verse, is that a certain maturity needs to be reached in order for someone to be capable of loving someone truly because loving unconditionally like that is hard work. It takes a real man or woman to demonstrate true love.

I thought it was pretty ironic/coincidental that as I question my relationship and the love that I’m receiving and the love that I’m capable of giving, I came upon Ally & Mike’s story. (You can read more about it here and watch a segment about it here.)

And no matter what anyone advises me or what anyone tells me is best for me, I needed to remind myself what I can/and should expect…what I deserve…from a relationship. I need to hold 1 Corinthians 13 as my standard for/definition of true love.

Because everyone deserves a love story like Ally & Mike’s.

And everyone deserves God’s definition of true love.

End of story.

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~ by Maureen on May 26, 2010.

One Response to “Defining True Love”

  1. Your right, everyone deserves it! I hope you find that kind of guy and never let him go! I know I did! 🙂

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