This last Sunday our lesson in Relief Society was on Charity. As a student for many years of the studies of unconditional love through the "Real Love" program, I absorbed the lesson very well.
As humans we tend to conform ourselves too comfortable around our social behaviors, thoughts, beliefs including our upbringing. This way of living tends to push off the true love we are all lacking off and are desperately yearning for. We all grow up this way and when we don't get what we want we become unloving.
Do we love others expecting something in return or do we love without expecting anything?
1. *Unconditional Love...
"We accept them as they are and we contribute to their happiness as wisely as we can."
When we give true unconditional love to others we receive in return true genuine happiness.
Unconditional love is the art of caring about the happiness of another person without any thought for what we might get for ourselves. When we give unconditional love we are not disappointed, hurt or angry even when people are thoughtless or inconsiderate or give us nothing in return including gratitude because our concern is for their happiness, not our own. Jesus Christ wants us to be happy and by loving others unconditionally we will then know and feel the pure love of Jesus Christ...it is genuine unconditional love.
This type of happiness is not fulfilled by money, fame, recognition, sex, or conditional approval by others. It isn't the feeling we get by manipulating people to do what we want or by being entertained by others. It is the happiness that glows within. It is the genuine happiness that is profound and ever lasting. It is a sense of peace and fulfillment that is deeply satisfying as it enlarges the heart.
When people are aware of this type of happiness and they know how to love everyone unconditional they are never disappointed or angry for the foolish mistakes others make. They are never angry for when people don't do what they want them to do or when people inconvenience them personally...they are happy people and are willing to make others happy not expecting anything in return.
Unfortunately when we experience the lack of unconditional love we experience a terrible loss of self esteem, we also experience loneliness, depression, anger, disappointment, we have hurt feelings and we attack others without realizing it. This is conditional love not unconditional.
2. Conditional love is...
"I like how you make me feel."
Conditional love is what people give to the us when we do what they want and it's the only kind of love most of us have ever known. People like us more when we make them feel good or when we don't inconvenience them. In other words you are buying their love.
It is critical that we know how to distinguish between conditional and unconditional love. There are two ways to know the reliable signs of conditional and unconditional love. Every time we frown, sigh, speak harshly, or in any way become angry at people, we're communicating that we are not getting what we want and we are not loving that person unconditional. When we are disappointment and anger we feel empty, unhappy, and we become frustrated by what others do or say. Giving or withholding acceptance based on another person's behavior is the essence of conditional love.
Unconditional love requires no limits, no doings to earn their love, it has no barriers, no regulations, no "IF" or what is it for me, it has no requisites, no color, no religious belief, no politics, no handicaps, no status, no age limit and it there is no license requirements to have it.
This love is genuine, its pure, its clean, it glows, it brings happiness, it brings people together, it surpasses anger, it says I'm sorry, it gives hugs, it smiles, it brings the best in people, it cares, it gives, it is merciful, it is humble, it unites, it is solid, it accepts, it creates, it flourishes, it blossoms, it has a ray of sunshine, it is full of cheer, it is uncritical, it is not judgemental, it is soft spoken, it is felt deeply, it has no blemish or stain, and it is given without expecting "ANYTHING" in return...
IT IS THE PURE LOVE OF CHRIST..."Charity"... it is "UNCONDITIONAL LOVE"!