Jesus reveals that true manhood loses itself for the beloved.  But what if we don’t see others as exactly loveable, let alone “beloved”?  If you are having trouble really loving, perhaps you’re having trouble seeing.  We look at humanity and the humans that make it up (even those close to us) and see sin, error, ugliness – but God saw a prize worth dying for.  Maybe the problem with your lack of love is a blurred vision.   We want to be free from looks of lust, and other utilitarian distortions, and see the world, and especially those close to us, as good and beautiful, as loveable; as “Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear” (Shakespeare).  But how?
To love someone is to see them as they are and to say, “It is good that you exist.”  Its not to see them through some lens or ideal, but to truly see them.  “It is good that you exist.”  That doesn’t sound “lovey” to you?   Consider the alternative: “It is not good that you exist.”   Now that’s an un-lovey sentence.  (Say it out loud with a little grit, you’ll hear the terror of the very idea.)
The warmth of an embrace, the feeling of the loving gaze, the pat on the head, the smile – all of these things tell the other that “It is good that you are.”   It is but a repetition of God’s loving proclamation after He loved reality into being: “And God saw all that he had made, and found it very good” (Gen. 1:31, Knox Version).   This is why the tactic of women giving men the “silent treatment” is such a cruel thing – “It is so not good that you are here that I’m pretending you’re not.”  Or consider a child growing up to say of