In what’s found in an extraordinary number of quotes and song titles, there’s the feature of truth within it. We find ‘love’ where we find it. Poignantly when talking about the intensity, and fractured nature, of the love within her relationship with Bobby Brown:
“Love is where you find it.”
~Whitney Houston (1963-2012)
People’s experience of love is as they find it. They may not know love until they do. Yet, so much ‘love’ is not really love at all—only a fabrication, a pretentious form of the divine nature of a thing so goodly special.
Is There Such A Thing As Bad Love?
There has perhaps never been a more relevant question. In sowing into life, as we all do, we all seek for love. The majority of us pine for romantic love; or the inkling finds us. And every single one of us needs, as a basis for our relationships, the love of acceptance beyond the betrayal of rejection. Such love is importantly, trust.
Love is such a broad concept, so far beyond romantic notions, that it pervades through all facets of life.
There is much bad love in this world, causative of sin, resplendent in selfishness and based in hang-ups and hurt. Bad love sweeps through individual relationships, whole families, even, in some instances, entire communities.
Bad love is a thing without love portraying itself as love. It is a hoax—the worst kind; because hopelessness and relational death occur as a result.
Wherever abuse and neglect prevail bad love has had its say. And if this love is what we found, not good love, we will have known of many forms of destruction. Indeed, we may have borne witness. There’s so much bad love to be seen, especially in this media age. It shreds the heart of God.
Again, bad love is not really love at all—it just offers itself as love.
You Give Good Love
Love of the purest quality, unabashed in its simplicity, and passionately seeking for another, is what we should all hope to find.
Still, so many do not know to look for this real, ‘good’ love. Their reference points are in other forms of reward: attention, praise, necessity, and security, for instance. Not having been blessed by experience, it’s perhaps all they know. Bad love may be better than no love at all—again, a bad reference point for love.
Good love is present in all good relationships; situations of relating within the equality, harmony, and the actualisation of true need. Safety is implicit. So, too, trust and respect. Integrity sits on both sides. Each party to the relationship wants the very best for the other person as much as for itself. It epitomises Jesus’ Golden Rule: “In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7:12)
If this sort of love has found us we should not pat ourselves on the back too eagerly; we should, otherwise, be eternally grateful to God that our positive experience spoke into our lives and determined our love would be that which love truly is—as far as its humanly possible to achieve (in its frailty).
Love tends to be where we find it. If we found bad love it caused destruction for us. If, on the other hand, we found good love—God’s pure love of harmony and goodness for others—we have been blessed. This is a day to praise God for that. God gives good love.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.