When people first fall in love it is usually because of a multitude of things, but one of them is for sure because of the actions of the person they are falling in love with.
I love to HEAR my husband and kids tell me they love me, but there is just something about the actions that are the overflow from that love. On the other hand, if I don't SEE any actions or fruit from those words I could easily begin to question those words.
Each of my kids have gone through an “I love you” phase. It is really cute. I remember when Areyna, our oldest, went through this stage. I began to keep a daily tally of just how many times she would say it with a guess at what kind of “I love you” it was. I knew deep down she loved me, but many of the “I love you's” were said simply out of habit or as a result of wanting something. The most comical “I love you's” were the ones said after being caught doing something disobedient.
Our middle son, Micaiah, is the one currently in this stage. He throws out “I love you's” all day. But one day after quite a few disobedient episodes I was tucking him in bed when he exclaimed an “I love you” with a beaming grin, as if nothing had ever happened.
I leaned over and gently kissed his chubby little cheeks and reassured him of my reciprocated love for him. But then I told him that it would be nice if he would SHOW me he loved me by obeying me.
Now, I wasn't trying to tell him he had to earn my love and affection, I will always love that boy! But the actions should be a natural overflow of his love for me. A love without actions isn't a very deep and tangible love is it?
So now it has become a thing in our family to remind each other to SHOW love, not just to say it. I think they should organically go hand in hand.
As a matter of fact, Solomon thought the same thing.
1 Kings 3:3 says “Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of David his father…” He loved the Lord and proved it by walking in the way of his godly father.
After reading this verse it made me even more confident that the “I love you's” I say and hear should be coupled with actions. Not only does it show others who we love, but it proves to the recipient that we love them enough to put forth some action to go along with those longed-for words.