I think, my Lord, I begin to see.
To love is not just to bear the burdens of another. Nor is it unconditionality with a face passive and long grayed by forbearance. Real love is a bright young form that enters even the darkness of the beloved, leading what is good and bright in them out by the hand. Love is to see the good that lurks unnourished in a person, and love is to coax it forth. Love is to remind the one loved of the riches of who they are, to call forth, with compassion and delight, what they were created to be.
I read this morning that “love is patient.” And too often, I apply that verse by gritting my teeth in the face of other people’s offensiveness to me. My soul sets itself in a pale, thin-lipped determination not to let my irritation burst forth. And I call it love. It isn’t though. According to the Spirit’s whisper in my heart (and the Greek translation if you must know), love that is patient ought really be described as love that doesn’t lose heart. Love that seeks and hopes for every goodness to come bursting forth even from the people most sandpaperish to one’s soul. Love is seeing every good they can be and relating to them in such a way that the beauty is beckoned forth.
Truly patient love is springtime. A warmth, a light, that calls green life from the dormant earth.
Today, I’m going to be spring to as many people as I can.