I’m falling in love! You complete me. I can’t live if livin’ is without you. You can’t choose who you love. I’ve never felt this way before. You’re the one. I thought you were the one, but my feelings have died. I’ve fallen out of love. Maybe I was never in love. Oh thank you, Hollywood.
Hollywood’s version of love is completely descriptive. What do I mean by that? I love you as a description is limited to a certain set of emotions, feelings, thoughts and ideas we experience toward others. Really, it means, “I like how I feel when I’m with you.” And if a time comes when I don’t like how I feel when I’m with you, well I must not love you anymore. It’s a context where relationships are mostly a place to get love. That’s where I love you as a description leaves me. But there is another way to say I love you. And it’s truly remarkable.
I love you as a description really means I like how I feel when I’m with you.
Instead of a description, consider that I love you can be a powerful declaration; it’s the stand I take for you, for us. It literally creates a space, a place, to bring all my love to. It is a context for the expression of my love to show up in and where relationships are a place I give love. Being love is the stand I take, regardless of my mood or circumstances…or your behavior. I love you as a declaration is that WHO I AM is love for you, to you and with you. Always. And as love, I am the space where you get to be great. You get to be amazing. You get to be all you are truly capable of…even if you choose otherwise. Isn’t this just how God loves us?
I love you as a declaration creates a space, a place, to bring all my love to.
However, I love you as a declaration is a commitment to nurture and cultivate through words, thoughts and actions the emotions and feelings that bring aliveness to the space that the declaration makes. The key here is that the declaration isn’t dependent on the emotions and feelings being present before it is made. On the contrary, the declaration must be made first to create the space for the emotions and feelings to be developed in. And when the feelings and emotions fluctuate…as they will…the declared space is still there for them to be regenerated over and over again.
Declaration isn’t dependent on emotions and feelings being present before it is made.
Right now, give it a go. I’d like you to picture someone you’re having difficulty loving. Out loud, say to them “I love you!” as a description, then, “I love you!” as a declaration. Do you notice the difference? There is real power in the declaration. Notice what becomes available from that position. It will have you loving greatly for a lifetime.