dating and singlehood · faith

to love divine

I want to err on the side of loving TOO much. There are those who seem to want to take the tough love approach and feel like they need to be the judge and jury all the time. I get that – I do. You watch people you care about making what you think as bad decisions and it takes all that is in you to not smack them upside the head and drag them kicking and screaming away from whatever it is they are chasing after which will only ultimately ruin their lives and damage their hearts. Instead, if you’re like me, you might say something soaked in love and garlic if and only if asked a direct question and only after deflecting as much as possible. You might say something like “well, you have to do what’s right for you” or “make the best possible decision with the information you’re given” or some other random movie quote you heard once from some really wise and totally fictional character.

But I believe strongly in balance and in trying to embrace the entire spectrum of possible methods and at times it becomes a series of backtracks and restating what is probably obvious but still needs to be said. Like I love you and I’m not going any where and there is nothing that will keep me from you and wanting what is best for you.

Sometimes, it occurs to me that what’s best doesn’t actually include me saying what’s wrong with the situation or what you should have done differently or any mixture of ingredients such as guilt and shame and fear and horror and disgust. In fact, sometimes what is truly best doesn’t actually include me at all. And so I want to be the one who loves well and knows when to walk away. And when to run.

But it’s not a gamble so much as an educated guess. I am going to be wrong many times. It’s happened. It will happen again, I can guarantee it. I will mess up, say the wrong thing, be the wrong person, do the wrong action. I will just be wrong. But as often as I can, I want it to be because I love way too much.

And it makes me think of the kindness of God, which leads us to repentance. It makes me think that most of us would scold God for loving too much, for risking too much, for trying too hard and for not disciplining His children more. If God were our friend sitting at the bar with us, telling us His love story, we’d be reprimanding Him for being codependent, not hiding His cards better, not playing the game the right way, not holding out for Ms/Mr Right. We’d say He was too easy, too giving, too generous. We’d say He was being too nice and giving the benefit of the doubt too often. We’d tell Him to save the romance and the wooing and charming for someone who is worth it, someone better for Him, who is more His equal, someone who won’t constantly treat Him like crap and ignore Him in public and stop returning His calls unless they need something. There’d be this general concurrence that He was wasting His time that they weren’t ever going to turn themselves around, that they were hopeless and loveless and He just shouldn’t throw His love away.

And God would lovingly shake His head, and smile, and remind us we couldn’t be any more wrong. Let Love always rule the day, He would say. I will never stop loving.

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