I read this on my friend's blog this morning and thought it was worth sharing:
"You'll never be able to love someone with God's kind of love if you want to get something from ."
"Ever complimented someone in order to get one?"
"Ever given someone something in order to get something?"
The spirit of idolatry. . . it is the reason for conflict in relationships. It is the reason someone can say they love you, and yet you don't feel loved.
Ever felt "carved on?" - ya know, where someone has you as their "idol" (looking to you to satisfy something in their life that only God can satisfy - expectations from you when their expectations should only be in Christ.) -
Being "carved on" can even come in not so bad looking ways : compliments, gifts, smiles and facial expressions, praise, flattery... but all done to get something from you in some way or form.
When you idolize someone, you give them the power to control you. . . If someone is making you "miserable," you give them the power to make you that way. Any time you idolize, you cannot love. Knowing and abiding in God's love is the only way to love others.
"My little children, guard yourself from idols." last verse of 1st John. It's the key to loving.