Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Love is not burdensome??

Love is not burdensome? What does John know that we don’t? Maybe this: we tend to treat love as a kind of goal-oriented affection. We love so that something will happen to somebody. I am not sure where that understanding comes from, but I am quite convinced that it’s true. And it is wrong. We do not love as a means to bring about some holy end. We love because God first loved us. Loving is the highest form of abiding, of being present for another. In Peace Is Every Step, Thich Nhat Hanh says, "If our love is only a will to possess, it is not love. We must look deeply in order to see and understand the needs of the person we love. This is the ground of real love." Understanding happens when we are present to the other, when we abide with her or him as Christ abides with us. Not a burden, but a presence. "If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish and it will be done for you." What more can we ask for than an abiding awareness of the presence of Christ in our lives, and a growing capacity to abide with others?

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