The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

February 8, 2014

Love is a verb to be lived and not a warm fuzzy to be talked about

Keeping The Faith

— Editor’s note: This column by the late Bev Davis originally was published Feb. 12, 2003. Davis passed away Aug. 1, 2010, of a sudden illness.

With Valentine’s Day approaching, the word “love” gets tossed around like a beach ball on a hot summer day.

It’s true meaning, however, seems to often get lost amid the day-to-day routines of living.

I spent the past weekend looking around at literary sources for their thoughts on how real love should be expressed.

Here are some of my favorite spins on the meaning of this intriguing word.

- “Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.

- Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.

- Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.

- Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,

- Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

- Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.

- For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.

- And stand together, yet not too near together:

- For the pillars of the temple stand apart,

- And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow. “

— Khalil Gibran

- “The love of which I speak is slow to lose its patience. It is kind, never jealous and doesn’t sing its own praises. It doesn’t keep track of wrongs. It isn’t happy when injustice is done, but is joyful when the truth prevails. Love never stops being patient, never stops believing, never stops hoping and never gives up. When gifts and knowledge and human resources pass away, three things will remain  — faith, hope and love, and the greatest of these is love.”

Selected verses from I Cor. 13

- When you say, “I love you,” to anyone, mean it. Be willing to back it up with your actions and attitudes.

- Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt, but it’s the only way to live life completely.

- Great love and great achievements involve great risk.

- Remember that the best relationship is one where your love for each other is greater than your need for each other.

- Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon.

Selected quotes

- May this be a day when you re-evaluate how you define love and how well you are expressing it to others. I’m not an authority on the subject, but there is one thing I have learned about love.

- The more you give it away to others, the more it brings back to you — and at the most unexpected times and in the most surprising ways.

HappyValentine’s Day!