If we were, to be honest, we would admit that we are not always soft-hearted. We sometimes live with full-throat ambition and no shortage of self-interest. We can be impatient and sometimes insecure.

At times we are tempted to get in a better place, and we like exclusive privilege. We can be judgmental, insensitive, petty and resentful, and sometimes we can be cheap and stingy. But deep down, we want to be like Jesus. We want to love better.

Do you believe that loving like Jesus is more attainable than you might imagine? His teaching and example reveal at least five distinct and practical qualities of His love.

If you want to love like Jesus we are instructed to:

  • Become more mindful, and less detached.
  • Become more approachable and less exclusive.
  • Become more graceful, and less judgmental.
  • Become more emboldened, and less fearful.
  • Become more self-giving, and less self-absorbed.

Is this an exhaustive list of how Jesus loved? Of course it’s not. But it’s a way to get an earthly handle on this heavenly ideal of love. Time and time again, Jesus demonstrated these five qualities and spoke about them, not as unreachable ideal. These are doable.

Ephesians 5:1-7 reminds us to observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of Himself to us. And we are instructed to love in the same way.

Are you optimistic about getting better at loving like Jesus? This love isn’t illusive. It isn’t pie-in-the-sky. It isn’t out-of-reach nor regulated to untouchable Saints. It’s real. Jesus gives us practical steps to love in extraordinary ways. He calls us to embody the five qualities. Are they difficult! Yes. But are they insurmountable? No.

Will you and I fail as we try to live them out? Absolutely. But don’t be discouraged. For its in our failed attempts that we learn to better travel the most excellent way.