'The Way' with Kevin Pauley
Originally posted on 09/14/2017
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. - John 13:34-35
A good man was walking on a beach on a hot summer day when he came across two children playing in the sand. Amused by their play, he paused to watch them. They were diligently building an elaborate sand castle. It had everything a fairy tale construct could desire: towers, walls, a moat and a draw bridge. The children even went so far as to begin building a secret passageway from the inner keep to the outside of the maze-like artifact. They were nearly finished when a huge wave came rolling in and instantly destroyed the project that had taken them hours to build.
But instead of crying as the tzaddik expected, they simply ran hand in hand away from the wave, laughing. Their sweet spirit and delighted laughter taught him a valuable lesson.
All the things on which we spend so much time and effort in this life are only so much sand. Sooner or later, the waves of time will sweep all our jobs, houses, cars, ministries, programs and projects into the great ocean of the forgotten past. When that happens, only the person who is able to stand hand in hand with another will be able to laugh. Only our relationships with God and man will last eternity.
Some people may believe that they love their solitude, but that is only because they know in their hearts that they cannot actually achieve true solitude. Here is a test – if you knew you were going to be stranded on a deserted island for the rest of your life and that you would never be able to escape, would you take a book or another person?
We were created to be social creatures. We need each other. You may sometimes feel that the only way forward in a relationship is through compromise. But if you feel that love IS a compromise, a defeat, you are mistaken. Love is a victory. It is the way we overcome life’s circumstances. Is love sacrificial? Absolutely. But all we sacrifice is those parts of us that are selfish and narcissistic. We are like the great artist’s statues hidden deep inside a marble slab. All that is needed is to get rid of the extra junk to reveal the work of art inside.
Don’t be afraid to let go. This is the time to choose. An act of love could tip the balance. No one ever got poor by giving themselves away.