Monday, November 28, 2011

How to Love

I am God's beloved. Beloved! Have you ever heard such a sweet word? I love how it rolls off the tongue. I am sweet and precious in His eyes. I am cherished. Now, if only my head would tell that to my heart. I have a feeling that when I truly get it, when I tear down the walls I have built to protect my poor bruised heart and let the light in, nothing will ever be the same.

Have you ever tried to be good? I mean really tried. Have you ever set out to love well only to fail miserably? I have. My desire to be kind and gentle, compassionate and forgiving, are quickly forgotten when I face the weakest of opposition. A mere look, a simple slight and I fall to pieces. Why is that? I think I know the answer.

I am still looking to externals to validate my worth. I am still operating under the false belief that I am not enough. Not pretty enough, not smart enough, not funny enough, not spiritual enough. Deep down, way deep down, there is a part of me that believes there is no good thing about me and that belief drives me. I seek recognition, affirmation and approval from others because I don't possess it for myself. When I try to love, and I am confronted with a word or thought that challenges my fragile sense of worth, I protect it at all cost.

But here's the thing. When I rest in God's love, when I open myself up to His light, when I seek Him first, the whole world loses it's power over me. In fact, I actually become a channel of blessings to others because who among us can contain the light? When we let it in it shines everywhere. It pours out of us. We leak love.

On my own I have nothing to give. Sure, I can reciprocate that which is given to me -I can love the lovable and have affection for the affectionate, but I cannot create light where darkness exists. Instead, I myself become blinded by the darkness too. I become fearful, arrogant, self-centered, jealous, resentful and hurt. We cannot give that which we don't have.

But God's love changes everything. Darkness does not exist on it's own. It has no source. It is the absence of light, not an equal and opposite force. I'm trying to meditate on that today. I am not going to focus on giving, I'm going to focus on receiving and in doing so be filled to overflowing.