Friday, September 30, 2011


I know it may be puzzling to read about love at this time of year. It's not the Christmas season when we are filled with love of church or family, and it's nowhere near Valentine's Day when we traditionally express romantic love. But as the song reminds us, "What the world needs now is love, sweet love". 

Today, so much attention is focused by the media on the opposites of love: hate, fear, dissension, and violence. Just about everyone at one time or another seems to be at the center of their attention. A large portion of the American public spends a good deal of time watching television news or reading the news in papers or online. These folks are being programmed -- or indeed, brainwashed -- into a hateful and/or fearful mentality. An us against them mentality. We are constantly being pitted one against another: country against country, the Democrats vs Republicans (and now the Tea Partiers), liberals vs conservatives, "legal" citizens vs illegal immigrants, believers vs nonbelievers, rich vs poor. We are exposed daily to the "failures" and "losers" in our society, and they differ depending upon who is telling the story. Of course, we all want to be on the successful, winning side, don't we? It can be confusing at times knowing which side that is. It flip flops on us as we switch the channels on our TV, read opinions by different authors, or hear results from the latest poll. How are we supposed to know who we are against?? Or who to hate?

Love is anathema to a good news story, right? But never has it been needed more by our society.
What kind of love is needed now? Agape is often defined as Christian love, or brotherly love -- it is a type of love that is encouraged by all religions and philosophies. But even atheists feel love for their fellow man. I've always felt that these verses in I Corinthians 13 project what would be a perfect love. There are a few additional words that define love as well: compassion, empathy, forgiveness, tolerance, and generosity. And one we often forget -- service. What would life be like if there were not those dear souls who, with love in their hearts for their fellow man, dedicate their lives to caring for others? I believe that it is the rise of greed in the hearts of some that has created the loss of quality in so many areas of service to others. It is becoming more and more the case of "if the dollars aren't there, the loving care isn't either"! And that's sad.
The song goes on to say, "No not just for some, but for everyone." Wow! wouldn't it be wonderful if we all experienced love? We may not always receive love, but we can always be love.. and express it in myriad ways to everyone and everything in the world around us. One little way I like to think I am spreading love is by purchasing the Love postage stamps. I put them on all my correspondence -- even the bills I pay by mail! Silly, but it brings a smile to my face thinking about the people who handle each piece of my mail and see that little spot of love on the envelope. I hope it brightens someone's day. I'm always eager to see the new issues of these stamps each year, and I'm upset when the post office is out of Love stamps. My favorite was one published years ago. It was a picture of the earth from space, and instead of being round it was heart shaped! 
You can tell how long ago this stamp was published by looking at the cost! These were sold in 1991.
I know that some people are put off by my habit of signing nearly all of my emails with "Love". I really mean that, though. If we are close enough to send each other emails -- even jokes -- that means we care about each other. If one can care for a stranger and offer love by way of little postage stamps or serving up food at a local food kitchen, why can I not send a little love by way of my often brief messages via the internet to people I know? I always have believed that words have powerful energy. If I put any energy into correspondence, I want it to be positive, loving energy!

I consider it an expression of love when I fill the bird feeder in my backyard.. or give the birds fresh water. Or when I feel sorry for Piper, the Great Dane who lives next door, when she is left in her pen for days on end, and I take her a couple of doggy biscuits and rub her ears and talk to her for awhile. She has even learned to "sit" politely in anticipation of her treats! When we give love, we often receive so much love in return.

We can share our love by donating to worthy causes -- money if we have it or time if we don't; by calling someone we love and haven't spoken to in a long time; by sending a get well card to cheer someone who is ailing; by forgiving someone who has inadvertently (or purposely) hurt our feelings; or by visiting a lonely person. And of course, there is always the Internet. To send a personal email -- even a short one -- to let someone know you are thinking of them has lifted the spirits of someone. (Myself included!) I like to think of it as Instant Love!

Even during all the natural disasters in the United States and other countries in recent months, it was heartwarming to see the love in action as people from all over the world as well as our own area rallied to offer assistance in every way imaginable. It seems to neutralize the pain and horror of such events if we concentrate on the rescue and relief efforts.
Love is truly  powerful. Below is a beautiful bit of prose written by one of my favorite metaphysical teachers. I'm sure I've posted this on one of my blogs before, but I think it needs to be read again and again:

"There is no difficulty that enough love will not conquer;
no disease that enough love will not heal;
no door that enough love will not open;
no gulf that enough love will not throw down;
no sin that enough love will not redeem...
It makes no difference how deeply seated may be the trouble;
how hopeless the outlook;
how muddled the mistake.
A sufficient realization of love will dissolve it all.
If only you could love enough you would be the happiest and most powerful being 
in the world.".. Emmet Fox

Yesterday I noticed I was getting increasingly impatient with the long line at the drive through window at the drugstore. I was penned in for 20 minutes, making me late for helping out at the Community Kitchen. I was very cross with the young man when I finally dropped off my prescription, telling him in no uncertain terms how I felt! As I drove off, I was ashamed of myself for my outburst. A few hours later when I returned to pick up my prescription, the same young man waited on me. (This time it took only 10 minutes!) He was very apologetic and made some comment about how it just didn't seem to be my day. I apologized to him, and even told him how I was learning a lesson about being in such a hurry. Patience, Marilyn, is a loving virtue!

Let me know your favorite way of spreading the love. We can't all be Mother Teresa, but in a myriad of small ways we can express love and overcome all the negativity that surrounds us daily. 

Peace to you all,

I love you!

1 comment:

  1. I loved this beautiful posting as I love you, Marilyn. 1 Cor. 13 is my very favorite Bible passage as well.