One of my favorite books is Martin Luther King, Jr.'s 'Strength To Love" I reread every so often trying to understand where all that love comes from. I wonder if I have that kind of strength? I wonder if I could love without judgement, in the face of great adversity and hatred? I don't know if I can get to that level. I do know I was shocked and stunned to love my children as each one arrived needing me.
I was always so guarded until they arrived. They opened my heart and in came warmth and joy, and real happiness. Unimaginable feelings that I always thought would never be for me. Sure I loved my siblings deeply. We were connected through blood and circumstances... loving them is/was a given. We were thrown together against great odds and survived.
Marriage gave me a glimpse of what love could be like. My then husband was patient on a lot of levels and on some not so much. I learned a lot in those 13 years. As I look back I can take away the things that add value to my life moving ahead. I can leave the things that blocked me and stifled me. That's OK, it all belonged once upon a time. I can hold all of it sacred.
In this mysterious season of advent... this time of waiting for the blessed event of a child who would save us all. I try to think about love in manageable bits and pieces... still consuming, but also peaceful and calming. Life in God is like that, passionate and hot, peaceful and calm. That is how I imagine and experience love to be. God has given us so many scriptures on love that we are pulled into fiery passionate heart stopping experiences and in the next breath often find ourselves kneeling by still waters. The passion and the peace called love often are found played out in other sacred works by poets and intellectuals alike. We are all witnesses to the burning passions and the calming coolness of love.
I am inviting myself to embrace the passions and the calm together. I am making room at my table for all that love is. I am open to whatever God sets on my table... be it feast or famine. It all belongs.