Loving Means Striving and Struggling…

Love isn’t a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun like struggle. To love someone is to strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now. Fred Rogers

Meditation: The art of loving begins in childhood. Children are usually unconditional in their acceptance of themselves and of others. At least until they get hurt or disappointed… Self-love and loving others are usually easy tasks when we are children, as most of us come to this world with a healthy sense of self-assertion, curiosity and openness. At least until we get hurt or disappointed… As teenagers, the art of self-acceptance and of loving others needs to be learned again. Those are the years when we struggle to heal from the hurts and disappointments we have received and are still receiving along the way. It is the striving to trust others again after we have been hurt. It is the journey to find one’s self anew and to accept one’s self exactly the way one is, right here and now. This is what makes teenage years so difficult. However, if there is a lack of support or lack of emotional resources during those teen years, the search to recover our ability to unconditionally accept ourselves and others can remain a struggle for life. And for many of us, it does. And therefore I like the thought that loving is not necessarily a perfect state of caring, but that loving can remain a struggle throughout our life as to accept one’s self and others not for how we want them to be, but for how we/they truly are.

Prayer: Loving God, sometimes we wish away the hurts and disappointments of life. And yet, they make our striving and struggling to love ourselves and others so real. When we experience those moments of either truly accepting ourselves or of having somebody else truly accept us,  just as we are, in the here and now, and not how we ideally could be, we experience love. Love is an active noun. Love is a verb. Love is an experience. Loving is a striving and struggling. Thank You for being the ever providing God who is loving us unconditionally just the way we are, here and now. Amen

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39 (ESV)