To love

Was seized by fear the day before, and it bothered me for pretty much the whole night till I went to bed. The moment when I decided to take a careful look at it was when a friend asked if there was anything she could pray for me for. I struggled to put that into words, partly because I don’t really like verbalising my feelings and partly because that fear was rather “unprocessed” that I didn’t know how to even talk about it.

I feared coming close to people. Because when that happens, I risk letting myself go up and down along with the state of the friendship. And that can be quite draining. My first instinct would be to run, to build walls, to hide – but these no longer make sense to me. That was why I decided to talk about it with that friend who asked if she could pray for me, because I felt trapped – I guess I kinda know that it will be bad for any parties involved if I simply run away. Yet at the same time, I didn’t know how I should deal with that fear. Well, didn’t really share much with her since I wasn’t sure what was exactly happening, but as I spent time alone afterwards, I learnt quite a few things about myself. Things that I would hate to admit.

It’s only until yesterday when I returned to an empty house after a long day out that I actually sat down to talk to God about this. I had wondered if I had placed too much in people (like what my friend kinda suggested), so much so that my relationship with them affects how I am. So, if things were placed rightly, there wouldn’t be pain if I lose them? I was then reminded of Jesus and Judas, and the question that came was this – did it not hurt Jesus when Judas betrayed him? Was it not painful? It sure was, even for this Man who set the standards for how we love God and love one another.

Concluded that that pain would be reasonable. I was then reminded of this statement that said, “To love at all is to be vulnerable”. I went to Google it, and I found out that it was written by C. S. Lewis. This was what I found:

To love at all is to be vulnerable.  Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken.  If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal.  Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change.  It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. 

Surely then, it’s a risk to take. It’s dangerous in some sense; or at least not 100% safe. Decided that alright, I’ll take that risk. What that quote said felt like a “It’s either you live by loving, or you die by shutting yourself away from it. There’s no in between.” So I guess, I choose to love.

A next question came along, and I told God that I feel like I love too much. And I felt that I have a problem with moderating the way I love – most of the time, it’s either too much or I simply don’t care. Interestingly, I was just looking at that same quote when it led me to something else that C.S. Lewis said.

It is probably impossible to love any human being simply “too much.”  We may love him too much in proportion to our love for God; but it is the smallness of our love for God, not the greatness of our love for the many that constitutes the inordinacy….But the question whether we are loving God or the earthly Beloved “more” is not, so far as concerns our Christian duty, a question about the comparative intensity of two feelings.  The real question is, which (when the alternative comes) do you serve, choose, or put first?  To which claim does your will in the last resort yield?”

That was an interesting conversation on love. Definitely learnt something new about love. And it really felt like a two-way conversation. For now, I guess I have two things to work on after reading these: 1, to abandon that fear 2, to love God more.

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To love

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