“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 7:12, NIV)
I’ve always wondered if that was the best way to treat others.
Especially after I read the 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. This book was a game changer for me as I came to realize that the way I express love and receive love is very different than the way my husband does.
For example, I love to give gifts and receive gifts
For me, it shows true depth of understanding and appreciating someone else. The best way for my hubby to show me he loves me is to buy me something.
That said, it can’t just be anything. I wouldn’t appreciate a painting of a cougar like I would of an owl. I love owls and everything about owls and would expect my husband to know this. By buying me an owl stuffie or an own figurine or a book on owls, I know that he knows me.
However, he does not respond the same way to gifts
As a matter of fact, I often found him to be nonchalant when I would give him a gift. I would feel real joy in giving him something I knew that he would like and sometimes I would feel disappointed in his reaction.
Until I realized that this love language is words of affirmation. He likes to hear me tell him how much I love and appreciate him.
So instead of spending time shopping for him, I have to ensure that I spend time talking to and affirming him.
But I digress.
This is not about Chapman’s book but rather about love.
Although the Golden Rule is good because it tells us to love others, I really resonated with the Platinum Rule that my pastor spoke of in church on Sunday.
He said that the Platinum Rule is to love others as Jesus loved you.
John 15:12–13 says, “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.”
This is unselfish, sacrificial love.
The Apostle John explains what this kind of love looks like in First Corinthians 13:4–7. The Message puts it this way:
Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
This is the Platinum Rule. This kind of love is the kind that Jesus displayed. This is the rule that we should each follow.
(First featured on Medium platform July 16, 2019)