Don’t Settle for Anything Less – Today’s Family Devotion

Don’t Settle for Anything Less

Bible Reading: 1 John 4:7-12

Anyone who does not love does not know God—for God is love.   1 John 4:8

Ask some elderly friends or relatives if they ever heard that old song about crushes and marriage going together like a horse and carriage. They will tell you it’s love—not crushes—and marriage that go together like a horse and carriage. But in everyday life, loads of people get the two mixed up. So what’s the difference?

Crushes are when girls get googly-eyed at boys. It’s when boys punch girls in the arm. Maybe you wouldn’t mistake those gushy feelings for true love. But look at some of the huge differences between crushes and true love:

     Crush    True Love
Starts and stops suddenly Grows over time
Stays shallow Goes deep
Up and down feelings Steady commitment
In love with love In love with a person
Breaks up when irritated Doesn’t panic over problems
Focuses on looks  Focuses on character
Takes Gives
My feelings Other’s needs
Self-centered Self-controlled
Physical attraction first Emotional and spiritual attraction first
Expects to find happiness Expects to work at happiness
Asks, “How am I doing?” Asks, “How are you doing?”
Accepts if other is good enough Accepts unconditionally
Thinks the other person is perfect Sees strengths and weaknesses
Avoids problems Works through the problems

That’s a heap of difference! Crushes go away. But true love lasts. Even if a guy-girl friendship doesn’t end in marriage, true love still keeps on loving.

Do those characteristics of true love remind you of someone? They should, because they reflect the characteristics of God’s love for you. You are the object of that selfless, unconditional love every day. And when you start to live out those traits in your human relationships, you mirror God’s love.

TALK: Answer in your own words: What’s the difference between crushes and true love?

PRAY: God, help us to express true love to the people we care about.

ACT: You’ve probably seen boy-girl crushes. Maybe you’ve felt pressured to have a boyfriend or girlfriend. Do you need some one-on-one chat time with Mom or Dad about that?