I think that most of us would agree that there is Good Love, even Better Love and maybe Best Love. Even if our definitions of what those are don’t agree, most people would agree that all three exist. But how do we know what Good/Better/Best Love is? Surely, some of that determination can be made based solely on an inspection or an evaluation of an individual Love. But, in reality, we can only be sure that there is a Good/Better/Best Love in view of the fact that there are also Bad/Worse/Horrible Loves. If there is no contrast, there can be no appreciation or recognition of the first condition, the Good one.
Last week I talked about Alfonso X, the wise, and the motto of Sevilla, NO8DO, which translates to “he/she/they have not left/abandoned me.” But I am also a fan of Alfonso XI. He was the king in Spain in 1330, when the first edition of the Book of Good Love was published. I talked about the Book of Good Love in an earlier post, and explained that it is the source of the title of this blog. A friend in Spain emailed me this photo of a coin of Alfonso XI.
But the thing about this coin is, it is a counterfeit, from the epoch. What’s more, this coin is supposedly minted in the city of Sevilla, the city of NO8DO, he has not left me. And just as a coin from the king of NO8DO can be falsified, so too Buen Amor/Good Love can be falsified when it is in reality Bad/Worse/or even Horrible Love. One case of Horrible Love, that was initially interpreted as Good Love, comes to mind.
There was a woman, a smart woman, who fell in love with a man. This woman was a doctor, a Phd psychologist, a licensed marriage counselor, and had had experiences with men who had used and abused her, even at an early age. She met a man who took her breath away. He was cute, fun, and loving. He seemed to appreciate and value her. She made a decision to make a vow to join with him and be with him for the rest of her life. But soon after, things did not seem to be working out as she had imagined. He couldn’t hold a job, or bring income into the marriage. He was constantly taking, financially, emotionally, and managed to make it seem it was all due him. He deserved the emotional and financial resources he sucked off like a vampire.
After some time, after multiple DUI’s, it became apparent he was an alcoholic. What’s worse, when she came home to find him in the backyard shed, pants down around his ankles, door open, enjoying some personal time in public, it became apparent he had some sexual aberrations, which had in fact led to him being fired from his last real job. His family knew of all his problems, but didn’t tell her, because they thought she was his last hope to turn his life around – to heck with what it might do to her life in the process.
She loved him, and she knew that she couldn’t change another person. All she required of him was for him to admit his problems, and pursue professional help in addressing and improving them. She was willing to pay for all the professional help, all he needed to do was to seek and follow through on that. But, he could not admit he had any problems, and he certainly couldn’t commit to seeing counselors and seeking advice on how to address and improve his problems. He did take a business card for a counselor to court one time to show the judge he was in a counseling program, but he never even arrived at the point of admitting he had a problem.
I can’t even begin to describe the emotional abuse that took place in this relationship. But I know that it was there. I only know that it is contrary to the Best Love that is described in the Bible, that I have discussed in other posts to this blog. I go back to last week’s post, Alfonso X appreciating that the city of Sevilla did not abandon him. But there is the source of Best Love, which is Jesus Christ, and His Word, the Bible says that “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Heb 13:5, a quote of Josh 1:5).
Today, Christmas Eve, the day before the day of the birth of Jesus Christ, is a special day. And my wish for all of you is that tomorrow you will have a Merry Christmas, and that each and every one of you will know Good Love, hopefully Better Love, and best of all, the Best Love that God has demonstrated to us all through His Son. Tomorrow we celebrate the birth of Jesus. May we all remember what that day commemorates?