Conversation Corner
Family Corner (Loving Our Enemies --May 2003)

Love is a decision, not just a feeling. Discuss the difference between loving and liking someone.


Date: 5/8/2003 2:40:00 PM
Name or Pseudonym: newbie
Subject: active effort

Is there a book titled "The Four Loves"? I’m sure that is only one of many on the topic. A few lines in this forum would hardly do the topic justice! But I suppose if we get enough point of views here, we’d get a good picture.

I think "love" involves more of yourself than "like". There is no risk in liking someone. In loving someone, you have at a minimum, some emotional investment. You hurt when those you love suffer or hurt or is in anguish--not so much for those whom you like. You rejoice when those you love are joyful or happy ... ditto for those you like. The empathy is so much stronger when you love.

Yes, loving sometimes involve a conscious decision because we have a moral obligation to love. We have no obligation to like. We’re called to love the sinner as we hate the sin. Even when someone grates on our nerves, we make a conscious decision to love -- to wish that person well, to pray for God’s guidance in that person’s life, to desire good for that person. Some are easy to love and require minimal effort on our part. Some are not so easy and hence the deliberate choice to act and think lovingly towards them.

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