357 – Loving Others Means Caring for Others

Caring means sharing just as much as it means closing our mouths and silently growing as individuals from the inside out.

God puts people in our lives that require us to love other people in ways that are not so easy for us to demonstrate and express our love. Love isn’t love if it is easy. In this, everyone will always have room for improvement—even throughout all Eternity, every one of us will have an ongoing need to increase our own capacities to love.

Loving others doesn’t mean throwing enormous meals before them, even if food is your own love language. Loving others does not mean working for them or giving them money or giving frequent hugs or spending quality time with them, regardless of which of those are part of your own love language set.

It’s an old anecdote, where the man tells his wife, “I love you, I would die for you,” but she retorts, “Then take out the trash.” We all have baggage and the one thing that the people we love most need from us to know that we love them is likely the one piece of baggage that we don’t want to deal with. Loving others means confronting your own “skeletons in your closet” and “wrestling with your own demons”. If you’re not willing to deal with your own baggage then those closest to you will eventually tire and leave you, no matter how much love you feel for them.

To love others, we must take personal ownership and responsibility for where we are in life and where we will go from here. Love cannot exist without follow through and corresponding action—and it is no one’s responsibility to clean up our own lives and take necessary action but our own. Love means taking responsibility for our own faults—not making it our responsibility to repair other people’s faults nor to expect others to take responsibility to repair our faults. True love understands this.

When we love others, we can’t not take action to provide care. Everyone has basic needs—food, shelter, clothing, and, before those, other people need us to clean up our own mess on our own.