Love // Infatuation — How do you know if it’s real?

Love // InfatuationJust because you don’t find yourself drawing little hearts and love notes on a piece of paper doesn’t mean that it isn’t real. Likewise, doing these things doesn’t mean that it is. Love // Infatuation digs deeper into what love is and isn’t, what separates love from infatuation and why basing the words “I love you” on how you feel is not necessarily a wise idea.

Infatuation is a strong feeling of attraction to another person. It can be, and often times, is, lustful; or it can be as simple as feeling a pull toward a particular person. It can begin with a touch, a look, a kiss. Infatuation is caused by our brain’s reaction toward another human and that reaction is what causes us to fall in love so easily with someone, or not at all with someone else. In scientific terms, it’s a complex chemical reaction that releases dopamine when we are around someone. Most people actually call it chemistry. It’s like we’re being internally rewarded, and that’s why infatuation can be so dangerous.

It’s also called the “honeymoon phase” of a relationship. This is very important, and what happens after these initial feelings fade can make or break a relationship. It is often during this so-called “honeymoon phase” that we start to proclaim our love for someone.

Love is the choice that we make after our feelings have subsided some. To exercise patience where ours is wearing thin, to allow someone the intimate setting of trust and fellowship, to give them affection when we aren’t necessarily wanting it, to place and to fill another person’s basic needs before our own. It is being willing to do anything for someone, even if that something means making the greatest sacrifice of all: letting them go.

Love is defined by and reflected in our actions, our choices, our decisions. If we say that we love our husbands and wives and look at others with eyes of deceit, our words mean nothing. It is only when we can allow someone into our heart with open arms and give them our whole heart that we can truly experience love.

I can honestly say that before I met Danielle, I’d never really, truly experienced love. Through Jesus, she has opened my eyes up to this one, simple truth: that love isn’t about what you get out of it, but rather what you put into it. True love, as it’s seen in the movies, doesn’t exist. The truest love is what you give from the heart. Love is what happens after the rose-colored glasses of infatuation come off.

If you have not given biblical love a chance lately, try it. I cannot say that it will save your marriage, or that it will stop your relationship from ending if it isn’t meant to be, but give God a chance. Keep it up, even when you feel like throwing in the towel, for that’s when He does His best work. Let His Mercy, His Grace, His Power be your guide, and see if it doesn’t enrich your relationship.

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