(left, the author is not Bill Gates)
We all want the same thing, love. We just don't know how to get it.
Carson is on the right track. God is Love.
I had always considered myself a socially awkward person.
While I was fairly gifted academically, my ability to express and handle myself was very poor and I found myself with few and soon no friends at all.
I became increasingly frustrated, and become hateful of everything and everyone around me.
I started to pick out the flaws in everyone. I felt that humanity in general was worthless. I hated myself and my own inadequacies the most.
I watched those who had people that cared about them focus their lives on things like partying, drugs, sex, and other empty pursuits and I became incredibly bitter about it.
"These people have what I've wanted for so long, and this is how they spend their lives? On this junk?" I thought.
Some time afterward, I thought about what it was that I really wanted. Was it just friends? Did I just want to have people to regularly hang out with? Was it romance?
Did I want an attractive woman? Was it that everyone saw me as pathetic and I wanted to prove them all wrong?
I pondered on all of this, when it began to hit me:
I wanted to be loved.
I wanted someone that actually cared about me as a person, a love that was not based on sex. A love that did not make me out to be more than I am, but let me know that I was held in high esteem in their hearts.
But I ran into a problem: Was I actually worthy of such a love?
I had very little social ability and was not considered enjoyable company by most. Who would honestly consider me worthy of such love and affection?
So I had to think again: How does someone become worthy of such a love?
It was not long ago that I came upon your website the words that summed it all up: Love is self sacrifice; we love those who love us.
When we can honestly say that we expect nothing in return from someone and would give ourselves up for them, and they can say the same for us, then we can say we love each other. But do any of us exhibit such a love?
Before God, who is holy and blameless and in which no darkness can be found, all of us are worthy of death.
We all have wicked thoughts and selfish desires and have committed wrongs. While we often like to think of ourselves as good people, the truth is that to God, who is perfect, such false arrogance is intolerable.
It would have been well within his right to wipe us all out, but he didn't.
Instead of destroying the whole human race and saving Himself the heartache, He loved us so much that He came as a human to serve and humble himself before all, who gave Himself up even to death so that we might be redeemed by his sacrifice and know how to live for his sake.
I hated that others didn't enjoy themselves around me, but I knew that there were others I avoided as well. I hated my lack of success in romance, but I knew there were women I would refuse to even give a chance.
I hated when I felt people looked down on me, but I knew that I myself looked down on others. I was a hypocrite and I knew it, but aren't we all guilty of hypocrisy?
The beauty of salvation by Christ is that it's a gift of grace with no strings attached.
God gives it to us unconditionally, not because we are worthy, which we aren't, but because He loves us and true love is selfless.
All that He requires of you to enter the kingdom is to accept Him as your lord and savior and love Him with all your heart back.
Love is self sacrifice; we love those who love us. May your love for each other grow and you focus on the eternal.
The Unabridged Article
Makow comment: Love is self-sacrifice, but that begins with obeying God, i.e. our highest conception of our own behavior. The love we seek is found first in our relationship to God (or Christ, or Mohammed.) We must worship (love-obey) God with all our hearts and know that He loves us. The more we love (obey), the more we are loved. From this energy, we can love others.
Henry David Thoreau wrote in Walden: "I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavor. It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do [by monitoring thought and where we direct our attention.] Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour."
"Any nobleness begins at once to refine a man's features; any meanness or sensuality to embrute them."