It bothers me when people mess with basic truths of existence. (Mess around and question are completely different. I am all for questioning. But messing is different.) Messing implies lack of reverence and, in fact, lack of basic recognition that these truths are as important to our existence as water to a fish. Messing hurts more than any attack could because an attack is direct. An attack stands up for itself and says, “Hey, I don’t like what you stand for. Here is what I think is better.” An attack acknowledges existence. An attack tries to take someone down, but it does it from the front. Messing never attacks. It oozes. It reconfigures and leaves you wondering where you are. Messing denies existence. I cannot imagine a worse fate that being unacknowledged out of existence.
Messing is two parts passive aggression, three parts ignorance, and five parts pride. Messing comes from hurt people who need healing, but don’t know where to get it. Messing comes out of anger and sadness from people who have put band aids on top of patches on top of scabs on top of duct tape. Messing is a way of trying to discover a solution to a problem that they don’t know exists. Because the problem is so deep or painful or private that even to acknowledge it would make east west and up down. Messing comes from people who don’t know what love is because what love is has been covered up in what I Want and what I Need and Romance and Hallmark and every other selfish trapping that turns us away from Truth.
And no that is not a catchy 80s tune. That is what the crucifix on my door frame tells me each time I walk through the door. Love isn’t romance, love isn’t a greeting card, love isn’t a FEELING at all! Love is giving up what you are to build up who someone else is. Love is sacrifice. Love is honesty. Love is charity. Love is beauty. Love is something that you can give up on but, love isn’t something you can fall out of. Love is a choice.
I choose love every time I keep my mouth shut even though I would rather be gossiping, every time I smile even though I am tired, every time I choose the right way even though there is an easier way, every time I listen to a boring story even though I am busy. I choose love. And it isn’t easy. It’s really hard. And many times it stinks. And sometimes I resent it.
But that is what love is. And I remember this after every chick flick that makes me angry for it’s portrayal of love, every backhanded slap the Church gets on the news, and every time my friends hurt me with an unthinking comment that undermines my foundations.
I know what love is. And I can try to tell you. But I would much rather show you.