Love your enemies.
People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered. Love them anyway.
Pray for those who harm you.
Pray for those who persecute you.
We are all created in His image and likeness, love all His children. Period.
In case you haven’t heard, we have a universal call to holiness. That doesn’t just mean that Catholics are called to holiness or that Lutherans are called to holiness, but we all, as children of God are called to holiness. The other news flash? Holiness doesn’t come from tearing other people down or saying that anyone, for any reason is no good, so-so, or not good enough. Anyone. For any reason. He who is without sin shall be the first to cast the stone, remember?
Here’s the deal: since Mr. Irish and I broke up a number of people have said that he wasn’t good enough for me, or that God wouldn’t call me to marry a “so-so” man, or a number of variations of these same sentiments. These are statements I’ve heard every time I’ve gone through a break up. I’m sure these people mean well, but tearing Mr. Irish (or any of my ex’s) down does nothing for the healing process, or for our holiness (theirs for saying these things or mine for giving me an opportunity to agree with such thoughts). If you’ve been following this blog you know what a wonderful person Mr. Irish has been in general and to me, so tearing him down, saying he’s not worthy of me or that he is a “so-so” guy is rude at best. Is he perfect? Of course not, he’s human. I’m not perfect either and yet we are called to love, period. We are called to see that God dwells in everyone and we are challenged to love God in each other. That is part of the challenge of being created in His image, we all bear His image. Sometimes it is harder to see than others, but that doesn’t mean His image and likeness isn’t in each one of us. Aside from the two of us no one really knows why it ended so who has the right to say that he is unworthy of me, or I of him? No one except God.
The truth is that I’ve been guilty of this with my friends, too. It’s easy to think that telling someone “he wasn’t good enough for you” is going to be comforting. Maybe it will be, but it is certainly not the holiest thing we can say to someone. I spent a good chunk of time with Mr. Irish so telling me that he isn’t that great or isn’t good enough for me isn’t comforting. It makes me sad that anyone would think that about him (and I imagine there are people out there who have said the same things about me to him). Was he the man God has chosen for me to marry? Maybe, maybe not, that day has yet to come to fruition. What I do know is that for that time, Mr. Irish and I were supposed to be together – that is knowledge that no one can take from me or tear down. The love we had was real and truer than I ever thought possible, so tearing our relationship, our love or him down in hopes of making me feel better actually achieves the opposite. God knows it is the far easier option. Choosing to love and show love through the pain of it ending is no easy choice, believe me. But if we are truly pursuing the heart of God then love really is the only choice we’ve got. Otherwise, it is like we never left the playground and we are still bullying others. I don’t need or want Mr. Irish to be torn down or made small so that I can feel better and move with my life. I dont wish, at least in my rational moments, that he would feel horrible just so that I can feel better. Choosing love means that no matter how deep my pain goes I still want him to be happy. As he sings in one of his songs, “Even though what transpired, I hope that you find that fire.” And I hope he does. I don’t feel better by tearing him down or allowing others to tear him down, I feel better by knowing that God still finds both Mr. Irish and I wonderful children of His, no matter where He is calling us now.
So let’s commit here and now to stopping the post-break-up bullying. Don’t tear down your friends’ ex’s or your own ex’s. God loves them. Christ lives in their hearts. Sometimes it is hard to see Him there, but He lives in their hearts and we are called to love the God in everyone, even if they broke our hearts or our friends’ hearts. It takes nothing to tear someone down, especially after they’ve caused pain in your own life or your friends’ lives. It takes a bigger, stronger, and I would contend holier person to love and pray for those people despite the pain. Say their name in prayer. For years now, every time I go to Mass during the prayers of the faithful (the time when we pray for our intentions and the intentions of the Church) I silently say the names of the guys/men who have come into my life and changed me, for better or for worse. Saying their names, lifting them up in prayer, during Mass no less, helps me to ward off bitterness and to give their hearts to God, trusting that He will take care of them and shower them with His love. Choose love. Love anyway.
What I’m Listening To:
“I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz
“Hello World” by Lady Antebellum
“Even If It Breaks Your Heart” by the Eli Young Band
“Teach Me How Love Goes” by Kris Allen