Understanding Worth = Expressing Love

Understanding Worth = Expressing Love

Benjamin Porter [MDiv 2009] and another co-founder have started a movement that has the goal of getting to the heart of what love means. He helps lead the Love Movement, an organization with the vision of empowering the next generation with a more biblical understanding of love, relationships and service.

Ben was inspired to start the Love Movement while studying counselling at Tyndale and through his internship experience. Working for the Salvation Army he saw first-hand how people misunderstood the true nature of love. “I was seeing people from local churches who would just drop off food or drop off clothing; to me that was not necessarily expressing love in fullness or in a way that was complete.” Ben noticed that there was a relational aspect missing. Volunteers and donors were disengaged with the individuals they were helping. He noticed that people were seeing the needs yet were missing the people behind the needs.

“There were couples and individuals coming to me that had a misunderstanding of what love is,” explained Ben about his experience in the counselling internship. “It was shocking to me. There were couples in their early thirties, who grew up in the church and were church leaders but did not understand that love was not about them. If this is misunderstood within Christian relationships…then what hope is there for a thirteen-year-old looking up to the people they see on T.V.?” Ben focused his Masters research on love and relationships. “Tyndale and the counselling program gave me a point of view where I could look deeper into mental health, the Bible, what God is saying and how they align.” says Ben.

Ben and his partner, with support from many NGOs and prominent church and para-church leaders, collaboratively created an interactive Christian curriculum. This was supported by a television series and a media campaign driven by a passion to empower the next generation in the church to truly understand what love is. They have taken out youth groups on volunteer excursions and exposed them to the reality that the homeless person on the street is an individual with a story and a history.

“The ultimate need that needs to be met is to understand that human beings have worth,” Ben insists. “[Understanding] worth takes time, it takes energy and it takes patience. To express that they are worthy is expressing love.”