In 1992, when pastor and radio host, Gary Chapman published his book, The Five Love Languages, little did he know that the book will become a back-to-back best seller and that the idea of love languages will resonate so loudly and become much-talked about.
Through his work, we understand that primarily, a person’s love language is that medium of action from others, through which the person feels loved the most. It could also mean that such medium is the means through which the person expresses love to others the most.
According to Chapman, in our world as humans, there are five love languages and they include: acts of service, words of affirmation, receiving gifts, quality time and physical touch.
Today, a lot has been said about man’s love languages but not so much about that of God. The idea of love languages is not limited only to man. Just as we have love languages, God also has his.
There are things we do that proves to God that we actually love Him.
Drawing from scripture, I have highlighted five of them in this post.
#1. Acts of Service
The bible gives us insight into one of God’s love languages through the conversation the Lord Jesus had with Peter at the sea shore after the resurrection.
First, He asked him, “Lovest thou me more than these?” Peter responded, “Yea Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.” The Lord said unto him, “Feed my lambs.” He went on to ask him again, “Simon son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter responded as in the first instance and the Lord said to him, “Feed my sheep”. Then he went on to ask Peter for the last time, “Simon son of Jonas, lovest thou me? By this time, Peter was already vexed. He said, “Lord thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Then Jesus said unto Him for the last time, “Feed my sheep.” (John 21:15-17)
What was the Lord trying to do here? He was saying indirectly to Peter, if you truly love me, prove it! And he asked him three times for the sake of emphasis. It’s like in Africa, when a parent calls a child’s name three times before saying a thing, the child knows that matter is a weighty one.
Note that the Lord was specific in what he desired as Peter’s proof of love. He wanted him to render service to his lambs and sheep. In other words, the Lord will truly know that Peter loved Him by his ministry labour over God’s people. That’s act of service.
So, you see we can show to God that we love Him by our labours in the kingdom. And that is the more reason why when we render service in the kingdom via any outlet – be it in church, mission work, campus fellowship, interdenominational groups and so on – we should never bring man into the equation. We should never seek to please man but the Lord because in the real sense of it, it is between us and the Lord.
And we should never forget that!
Cheerful giving is also one of the ways we show to the Lord that we love Him – especially when we give towards the need of the brethren. In 2 Corinthians 9, we see how the believers were encouraged to give to the saints from Macedonia, with the climax of the message highlighted in verse 7, that “God loves a cheerful giver”.
The idea in that chapter is further reiterated in 1 John 3:17 where Scripture says that, “Whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?”
So, you see when we give and share of our worldly goods and material possessions with brethren who are in need, we also show to the Lord that we love Him and His love dwells in our heart.
This is important to God because He also demonstrates His love to us by giving. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son”. 1 John 3:16 describes this interplay of love and giving as it concerns us, our brethren and the Lord, quite perfectly. It says, “By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.”
Giving is not always easy. However as we grow in understanding and allow the Holy Spirit more expression in our hearts, love builds up and giving becomes somewhat easier. Scripture says, “the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given to us.” (Romans 5:5)
#3. Not Loving the World
In 1 John 2:15-16, Scripture says, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life is not of the father
One of the ways you’ll show to the Lord (and indeed to every one around) that you love the Lord is to refrain from loving the world.
The world which the bible speaks of here, is not necessarily the physical structure or inhabitants and constituents of the earth. Rather, the bible speaks of the world as a system of corruption and pollution which is governed by the Prince of this world and gives utmost expression to the fallen nature of man.
This system sponsors certain ideologies, products, programs and lifestyle that only distort the knowledge of God and draw people farther from the Holy One. So to align with these things (directly or indirectly, covertly or overtly), is to show an affinity for the world and tell the Lord we do not love Him.
To love the world is to allow our actions, choices and ambitions to be directed time and again in the path of the pride of life, the lust of the eyes and the lust of the flesh. That’s the same junction where Adam and Eve got drawn away. The error of Eve and Adam had all the imprint of these three.
But, when we hate the world, we are communicating to the Lord how much we love Him!
#4. Brotherly Love
There are a number of scriptures that highlight how loving others prove that we truly also love God.
We find an emphatic one in 1 John 4:20-21. It says, “If a man say, I love God and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?” And this is the commandment we have from him, that he who loveth God love his brother also.
It’s just simple logic. You can’t claim you love the Lord when you don’t love your fellow human being.
On the other hand however, when we relate in genuine love with our brethren in the household of faith, at home and indeed everywhere, we are sending a message to God. And He understands it clearly.
It could be difficult to love at times. But such times is when we need to draw deep from the resource of the Holy Spirit within us.
In John 14:15, Jesus utters something profound. He said, “If you love me, keep my commandments”
Similarly, 1 John 5:3 says, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous
Furthermore, in 2 John 1:6, Scripture says, “And this is love, that we walk after his commandments.
You see, as far as the Lord is concerned, if we truly love Him, we’ll do what he tells us to do – whether as written in scripture or as He tells us personally.
This is arguably the most demanding of them all because it is sometimes difficult to obey. More so, it is all encompassing. So, often times, it takes walking in obedience to express the other love languages. Simply put, obedience is the anchor of the other love languages.
The Big Question
We probably have professed our love for God more times than we can remember. The million dollar question we are however left to answer is: how much of it have we expressed in God’s language?
Just the way it is with us, God will only a reckon and appreciate our professed love for him, when we profess it more in his language.
So, how much of God’s love language do you speak?
Do you know other love languages of God? Kindly share them in the comments.
If you enjoyed reading this post and found it valuable, kindly share, so some others may benefit from it too.
Ogaga Eruteya is a Nigerian Christian minister, writer and speaker. He writes on Faith, Personal Development, Youth Development, and Life Realities. With his words, he seeks to inspire, motivate, propagate life’s truths and represent a sincere Christian voice. Learn more about Ogaga here.