I have just finished the final chapter of my book Upward and I wanted to share the opening paragraph with you.
What is love in the context of looking up? Well, there are many forms of love and many terms to describe it – fondness, affection, warmth, devotion, lust. But in the case of upward thinking and upward living, the Greek word agapo, best describes the love that looks up. It is characterised as unconditional love, not based on emotions, but rather on will and the benevolence of the one who loves. It is also a love that requires choice and action. It is a verb, a doing word and is not passive or subjective, nor is it motivated by external appearances. It does not rely on whim or fancy but is defined by the character of the giver. It is a noble, pure love that looks up and out. Agapo is what transforms relationships, enables us to live lives of freedom and wholeness and transcends all boundaries. It stands boldly and looks perpetrators in the eyes and says, ‘I forgive you’. It reaches out to the stranger and says, ‘I know you’. It holds the lost and says, ‘I’ve found you’. It celebrates with the victor and says, ‘well done you!’. When we demonstrate this kind of love, our lives change. If each one of us chose agapo, the world would change.
But this is a challenge, a huge one in our time poor, self-driven, more, more, more society. How can we show this kind of love? Well, one thing I know for certain, we can't do it on our own. And, the other thing I know, we need each other. Love for one another is what we were made for.
So, my lovely readers, in celebration of love, I set before you a challenge. Below are a few thoughts, ideas and prompts for you to take action on, to show your love for others. Let's be do-ers, let's be action takers, change makers in o