I either heard it on TV or read it somewhere, but the message was for me and for many others. The truth of it has changed my life.
“It’s not my job to get love, but to give it.” Therein lies the cure for lonely people at Christmas or any special time of the year. For years I have felt abandoned by people I wanted to love me. Nothing I tried ever got the result I panged for deep within my soul.
I needed them to contact me, say how much they love me, and often; or so I thought. But that was not the answer to my loneliness and seeming rejection. The real solution was for me to experience the joy of giving, not receiving, love. Last Christmas was one I endured rather than celebrated, but this time my approach is totally new.
I’ve contacted people and expressed my love for them. They may love me back or they may not, but it makes no difference. Either way, I have experienced a joy that cannot be purchased, that cannot be obtained in any other way.
This very simple principle is rooted in the wisdom of God Himself. Jesus commanded us to love one another as He has loved us and further, to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. His command is a gift to us, not a matter of obedience; by living His teaching we receive a fuller life and a sense of abundance.
No longer feeling sorry for ourselves, we get excited about the endless possibilities of following this law to the point of happiness without limits. The loneliest, most abandoned individual in the world still has access to this mighty blessing. Nobody is denied this opportunity to come back to life.
Love fosters life, always. There are no exceptions. Betrayal, scorn, insults, loss, or violence cannot stand up to the force of love. Love is at the center of all creation and is the very reason that God brought the universe and mankind into existence.
Every abandoned person bearing the full impact of being rejected by this world can find someone who needs to be loved. All people need to be loved. Oddly, though, the greater necessity is to love somebody else.
I can take this divine concept and run with it all the way to ecstasy. I can choose to love every single person I ever see. And those who seem to be the most unlovable are the very ones I should seek because a real challenge is presented that if overcome will bring a high that no drug could ever achieve.
I have been lonely before, and I will be lonely again. But I have loved before, and I shall love again. If the choice is up to me, and it is, I select option number one: to love and to love some more; then to love still more and more and more until my joy is overwhelming.
The foregoing is furnished courtesy of St. James the Elder Theological Seminary, a low-cost distance-learning ministry for all denominations. http://stjamestheelderseminary.org
About Fr. Heyward
Causes Fr. Heyward Ewart, Ph.D. Supports
Intervening for and treating victims of child and domestic abuse; pro-life activists; societal reform by understanding and applying correctly the...