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True love is more than a feeling, it's an act of the will. Feelings can be fleeting, and should be the tail in our decision making process, and never the head. In other words, if I don't feel like loving today, I should not avoid doing what love requires on that basis. If someone needs me, I must look at our relationship, and make an informed choice to sometimes show love when I least feel like it.
We understand that parents must be there for children, even when they anger us, or disappoint us. This same principle is true for all relationships.
If I waited to do the right thing until I was "moved" to do the right thing, most times, the right thing wouldn't get done. For this reason, we need a hierarchy of values and principles. For me, love is the highest value. If I pass someone in need, I may not feel particularly loving on that day. In fact, helping them may be an inconvenience, or worse. It may cost me. It's not what we do that we 'feel like doing', that often defines us, but what we do when we don't feel much like doing it. I can hug someone who makes me feel squishy with delight. It's hugging those I don't feel like hugging, because in my will, I do care, that defines me. If I care, but my feelings are disconnected, this doesn't make me insincere. It makes me realize that sometimes my feelings lag behind what I know to be right. Often, I have reached out to people that I didn't really feel warm feelings for. In fact, some were difficult and cold. However, I often was rewarded by seeing the light of life sparked in their eyes. Sometimes we are like a match that kindles a warm flame in a cold fireplace. They have the fuel, but need someone to light it. I have never regreted the risks of love, but have often regreted not taking the risk. Love the unlovely. Love the seemingly unloveable. I don't mean you should risk putting yourself before hostility. In that case, you might want to get a second or third opinion. But in most cases, we pass cold and distant people, and they seem as walking dead. Sometimes its simply because of fear and inner loneliness, and they are beaten down and afraid to open up. The risks of love pale in comparrison to the rewards. |