The Importance of Using the Right Words to Express Ourselves.
To Like or To Love?
On the weekend of our 16th anniversary my husband and I found ourselves in a little roadside greenhouse.
I love greenhouses.
I gushed about the pansies.
"Oh, I love these pansies, they look so happy."
He would look and nod.
"Look at these roses, don't you just love them?"
"Yes, they're nice," he patiently answered.
"Oh, look at this plant. I love it."
"Really?" He asks. "Do you really love it?"
My husband, ever the stickler for speaking about things with the appropriate terminology.
"OK, I like it a lot." I correct myself.
I wander some more and see more plants I "like a lot" and I sneak peeks at my husband, the man I "love a lot".
It isn't right to say that I love a pot of pansies and that I love this man. Clearly, there is a vast difference between my feelings toward the pansies and my feelings toward my husband.
We have had many conversations with our children about the difference between 'like' and 'love', and about the importance of placing our affections on things that really matter.
Obviously it is more important to love a family member than it is to love a hamburger and obviously we all know that we are using the word differently when we refer to our 'love' of hamburgers and our 'love' of each other.
But, it isn't all bad to be picky about the words we use because maybe we do get confused about our feelings when we use the word 'love' too flippantly. When I am invited to a friend's house and see her new decor and I say, "I love it," do I not in my heart, begin to give new decor a place of prominence? When someone has a new outfit that "I just love," do new outfits not somehow gain importance in my thinking?
If I consciously choose to use the word "like", I can appreciate beauty and style but by my word choice I am reminded that there are more important things in life. These things that I 'like' do not need to take hold of my affections.
So, on my 16th anniversary I went to a little roadside greenhouse.
I like greenhouses.
I left with a very cheery pot of pansies and a climbing rose that I like a lot.
There were many more things at the greenhouse to like and wish for, but the things left behind are only things worth liking. With me, as I left, was a man whom I love.
I left the greenhouse, not disappointed about the things I left behind, but with a happy and grateful heart for what I have.
Speaking correctly has a way of producing proper perspective