A person cannot love anyone without God. When we look through the eyes of natural vision (natural for our state of spiritual life), we see sins in people. So, we just cannot love anyone who has so much sins and untruth within them. But when God touches us, we start to see in a person his true essence, his beauty as of a creature made by the love of God. Our attitude to anyone depends on the fact whether we see God in them.
To learn how to love, you need to humble yourself and to understand, once and for all, that without God you cannot and will never be able to love. That is, we constantly need God’s help, which is abundantly given to us in the Church, in its sacraments. In the greatest sacrament of Holy Communion. Love in the Chalice washes away sins of everyone the Church is praying for — the living and the dead. We start to love, partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ, or rather, God’s love abides in us. But how can we become like God? For this, it is necessary that the whole life be spent on the work of getting churched, work of meekness and obedience, work of revival of the love that our forefathers lost in Paradise. Therefore, the saints say the Church is Heaven, where the laws of God’s love are already valid. Everyone goes to the Chalice! And there are no first and last ones. Everyone is invaluable for God, and the Lord gives Himself, His Love till the end. A person who has realized his sinfulness and grieved for it, receives greater grace at Confession than a person who has not sinned, but who does not see his guilt, his own darkening, and his own isolation from God.
To love a person is not easy. God is not always with us, because we do not hold Him in our sinful body, thoughts, and life. We stumble and fall again, and it’s not easy to get up. Self-love and vanity do not allow us to realize that we are nothing without God. It seems to us that we know everything and we can do everything. But we part from this illusion when the Love of our God touches us. Then we start to see clearly and to grieve for the fact that we isolate ourselves from God by listening to sin and living in it. However, as long as man exists on earth, it is possible for him to receive the love of God.
New Testament is the testament of Love. Not the testament of Law, where a person is told: “Do not touch, do not do, do not look.” But the testament of Love: love each other. The Gospel of Apostle John the Theologian (if we read it carefully, we can notice this) is all about love. When John the Theologian was already a 100-year-old feeble elder, he was repeating only one thing: “Children, love each other.” Everything else disappears: knowledge, prophecies, and the miracles we are looking for. There is love – and it is above everything.
However, to indulge the sins of a husband or to spoil a child is not love, but man-pleasing, that is sin. Love is when I can reproach and be strict with loved ones. Love is when I am compassionate to a person. Of course, it’s easier for a mother to tell to her child: “Take some money, go buy yourself something and get away from me.” And it’s so hard to tell instead: “Be patient, you must learn to ask God for help”. Love is not to fulfill any desire of loved one or to serve them blindly indulging their sins. Love is, first of all, a gift from God, it is an inner pain, it is a caring attitude to a person, to his soul, to his life. It is understanding. Love is when you can give up what you want or like for the sake of your loved one. For example, you want to go somewhere, but a person who is near to you, needs attention and care. And even if I’m not interested in what this person is talking about, I will listen to, because I want to love him. Love comes when a person forces himself to make some efforts. This is not a fairy tale with a happy end, love is a cross. “It is very difficult for me to bear the infirmities of this person, the devil prevents me from doing this, but I will try anyway. God help me! Help me to learn how to love, help me to accept people as they are, and to understand that their weaknesses are my weaknesses”. That is love. That is how God loves us.