Wednesday, July 22, 2009

How Do We Love?

How do you love someone in this lifetime? I mean that most sincerely. How do we, as fallible human beings in a fallible world yet still possessing those qualities that define us as made in the image of God, learn how to love someone the way we were meant to love someone. In other words how do we love another in such a way that reflects the image of God?

God loves perfectly which tells me that somehow, someday we too will be able to love perfectly and sometimes I think that maybe, just maybe we have the ability in this lifetime to exhibit perfect love, if maybe only just for fleeting moments.

How do I, as an imperfect human being yet still made in the image of God manage to offer myself up to someone else in love and manage to accept that other's love for myself so that we can both be in this relationship built on the very definition of perfect love? I don't know how to do it without it going wrong.

How do we relinquish our own fears of the pain involved in loving someone? And love always, always involves pain. How do we get past the fear of the pain in order to open ourselves to giving love and being loved instead of letting that fear of pain close us off to the experience and possibilities of that love?

Or how do we do this without it turning into selfishness and possessiveness? I think an aspect of perfect love is allowing freedom to both people involved in the relationship. It involves loving this person in such a way that you're willing to be without them – if only for a time, and trusting that they will come back to you instead of holding on so tightly thereby controlling and restricting that freedom.

It would be easy to just say to all of this "we can't", not in this lifetime and maybe that's true. But the problem is we are all wired from our very core, from our very soul, to need this and so this response of "we can't" only frustrates us. Knowing (or thinking) that we can't doesn't stop the need and so what do we do about that?

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