“What lies behind us and what lies before us
are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
“People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.”
— Mother Teresa
This popular quote of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s reminds me of 1 Corinthians 13 in the Bible. In essence that chapter says that no matter what you might have, if you haven’t got love, it is nothing. Of course, Ralph Waldo Emerson may have had something else in mind, but when I read it, 1 Corinthians 13 comes to my mind first.
Now reading Mother Teresa’s quote makes me think about the same Bible chapter, but this quote even makes me feel stronger because of the simple way this is phrased.
I used to love people, but then if they were too much trouble, I would not love them. That was what I was taught through a childhood of two divorces and bickering relatives. Starting out on my own, I decided that you either love someone or you don’t, that once you love them, you love them and that love is not something that goes away or it was not love to begin with. That was a very, very powerful conclusion for me and it has served me so well over the years. Love does not turn to hate. It is always love. Hate is something else entirely.
In my later years (feels strange to say that), I have grown to love people more unconditionally. They don’t have to do or be anything or any particular way. I just love them no matter what. I don’t love them less if they don’t do what I would like them to do. I just love them. We may go our separate ways for a lot of reasons, but the love remains no matter what.
If there is anything in my whole life I can think of that I am really satisfied with, it is learning to love regardless and understanding that love doesn’t have an on and off switch. It is so easy to be judgmental, but so much more heart-warming to be allowing and loving.
As Mother Teresa so aptly says, “Love them anyway.”
My Love Only Has An On Switch. It Is Stuck In The On Position. I Don’t Plan On Fixing It. It Isn’t Broken.
Spread Some Joy Today–Think today about some of those “lost loves”–the people you have loved and are not in your life now. Doesn’t that feel good to remember? Awesome! It can be your private moment.