Someone posted a quote from someone on Facebook years ago that rolled around in my head for quite some time. The quote was long but basically said that true love doesn’t hurt, that love is the only thing in the world that does not hurt.
This immediately didn’t sit well with me. I mean the quote sounded good and it had something like 50 thousand “likes” but I wanted to hit the keyboard and tell them they were wrong….just WRONG! Don’t get me wrong, love is a beautiful thing, but holy moly it can leave you hurting. I love HARD and I can tell you there is not often a day that goes by that I don’t hurt BAD, mainly due to me loving HARD. Maybe this person only loved people who loved them back, you know, those easy-to-love people. Maybe he only loved people who gave him warm fuzzies and showered him with appreciation for his love. I’m not sure, but he can’t be experiencing love like I have. Now, don’t get my words twisted here. Love is NOT allowing yourself to be continually abused. Love creates boundaries but that also hurts.
When you choose to love the “hard to love”, you don’t get much in return and it often hurts…hurts bad.
When you choose to love those who don’t have a lot of love for themselves, you have to watch as they engage in self-destructive behavior, and it hurts…hurts bad.
When you choose to love the “unlovable” you have to witness people cast them aside and tell you there’s no hope and it hurts….hurts bad.
When you choose to love the “unloved” you must stand your ground as they try repeatedly to prove you don’t really love them and it hurts…hurts bad.
I don’t think I ever really understood love until I started loving this way. You would think love would be an easy thing, but it’s not. Christ knew it wouldn’t be an easy thing too. That’s probably why He spoke of it so often. You know that “greatest commandment” speech He gave…remember, it said it was to love your neighbor and love God. Sounds easy enough. Try putting it into practice though. When your “neighbor” is that hard to love/unlovable/unloved person, then you begin to realize why He harped on loving people so much. It just ain’t always easy and it hurts….hurts bad.
But you know, that’s what Christ did…loved even when it hurt. In fact, I think he took it all the way to death….
So, even though I disagree with the warm fuzzy thoughts about love, I will keep doing it because of the joy of seeing the power of love. It’s not always immediate and it’s not always consistent but it does things that only love can do, and often in my own heart.