Robert Indiana's LOVE is iconic. The image has been used, reused, overused, and abused. Shirts, postage stamps, wall art...it has been on everything imaginable. What is it about this "simple" work that has captivated the world. First, we have to realize that it is not as simple as throwing letters together and calling it art. There were thoughts, sketches, redesigns, and different iterations of the idea before the public ever observed the finished work. LOVE started somewhere deeper than we know. If you read up on Robert Indiana & his work...you might come upon theories behind this work. You can rest assured, LOVE is not as simple as it might seem.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:34-35
In John, Jesus gives a "new" commandment. The command is to love. Seems simple enough, right? I can do that! Well, maybe not the person at work that gets on my last ever loving nerve. Oh... what about that relative that constantly points out that I've gained a few pounds. I know we are "family"...but. Then there was that person that was riding my tail on the interstate yesterday. They were kind of jerks. I don't have to love them!
I was being a bit overly dramatic, but I hope you see my point. Loving others isn't always as easy as it might seem. We find a million reasons to justify why we don't have to show the same kind of love, compassion, and grace that was given us! It might not be as dramatic, but love can be a challenge for us in many situations. If we have been hurt, if we lack understanding, if we think more highly of ourselves than we should....love doesn't always come so easy. Many times we feel if we're going to put our necks out there and love....by golly we better get some reciprocation. That isn't really how love works.
Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
Love is not as simple as it might look. However, for those of us who KNOW the Lord....we have the perfect example in our lives. Jesus modeled love with His life, death, and resurrection. If He lives in you...you KNOW love. It might not be easy to live it out at times, but trust the Lord to develop this in your life. He has called us to love....the only way you can know Him & make Him known is LOVE!