Ben Secomb

What's the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word love?

The first that thing that comes to my mind when I hear the word love: action. When you're annoyed, when you really don’t feel like love, and in that moment you're loving someone, that's true love.

My dad told me this when Bianca and I were getting married. He said that when you're married, if you're only loving your wife when you feel like it, it's going to be a bad time, it's won't be any fun. Something my dad has done my entire life; he'll wake up early and he'll make my mum a cup of tea. My mum has literally never made a cup of tea at my house, because my dad will always go and make her one. But you can't imagine that he would have been feeling the love for her every single day. People are annoying, especially when you live with them, but he still does it every single day because of the dedication he made to her in marriage is love. And love is just doing a thing. So he'll open a door for mum, doesn't matter if they've had a fight or anything like that. But I think it's a daily action, in the mundane stuff.

Seeing your dad honour your mum like that; were those your first examples of love?

100%. I think they're just so sure about everything. They're so sure about how to love each other and realizing early on that you have a responsibility to love someone through action whether you want to or not has made my relationships a lot easier.

What does love mean to you?

I think it's a little glimpse of God or a little taste of heaven. The world is pretty cool, but the world can also be crap. Whether it's your life, or the world in general.

A gift to someone or blessing someone with money or smiling at a stranger are all tiny little flakes of what God wants us to be like and it's just enjoyable. Bianca makes me tea now, she actually doesn't drink tea. When she makes me tea and brings it over to me, I feel like I'm reminded of the kingdom of heaven. It's a tiny little glimpse at what eternity will be like for us.

Love is just nice.

Do you think love can fix everything?

I'm having an internal struggle right now.

I think love can fix everything, but what does 'fix' mean? It may not take away a bad situation, the situation in a literal sense might still be there, or sickness or something like that, but love fixes you.

If you could inspire the world to love, how would you?

I would say, over the top giving and especially non deserved giving. In the Christian community we are pretty used to generosity, because we talk about it a lot and we all outwork it with each other. But if you go to a work colleague for example, who isn't a Christian, who you may not even be friends with outside of work, but you said to him: "Hey man, I was just thinking of you. I got you tickets to that sport that you like." What kind of reaction would that get? They would be so confused. People live their life feeling like they don't deserve anything and someone who is basically a stranger to them was thinking about them and then bought them something with absolutely nothing to gain or not in reaction to something that they did. I get very gitty giving people things.

Also gifts aren't just gifts, they carry a message with them: "Hey I thought about this", "I know you more than you think I do."

How has loving Bianca evolved for you over time?

I think when you start dating someone, or even when you're looking at dating someone, just because we're human and we're insecure; loving other people is often just a way to love ourselves. It's affirmation, I can get the attractive girl to talk to me, so I'm cool, I'm hip. I'll put effort into the date so she'll like me and I can like myself. And the longer you're together, the more mundane it is; it becomes far less about how it affects you. Which is obvious because love is selfless.

I think that's how it's changed for me. I was loving myself by loving her, but then slowly but surely I'm loving her more.

How has loving God evolved for you over time?

Probably pretty similar to the other way. I think only very recently has my relationship with God changed from: 'What do you want me to do? Give me the checklist, give me the boxes, I'll do what I can with the time that I have.' It's either that or: 'I'm sad come help me.' It's just maturity, more like a toddler and their father - come help me I pooped my pants, I can't fix this by myself. I don't have the emotional motor skills to do this. I think maybe over the last year and a half it has become more like my relationship with my parents now - where it's a relationship and I want to hear their opinions about things and I want to just sit and talk about things. Far less selfishly dependent and more just understanding who God is and that he just wants to be involved with what I'm doing.

What do you love?

I love the truest version of people. I think I can read people very well, I can discern people really well and it breaks my heart when I can tell that they are boxing themselves in. And especially that because I do that to myself, probably more than anyone I know. Because if that is who I really was, people would be looking at me in the streets so weirdly, but I'd be having a great time. Just doing little dances or doing whatever I want. I'd be one of those people carrying a boom box around that makes the public listen to my weird music.

I think that's what creativity is. It's expressing yourself. I think that's why I like making stuff.

But peoples truest selves; people get that once in every 6 months where they just can't control it. Where they are weird, open and warm, I'd love to see people like that all the time.

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