We all watched with embarrassed fascination the life and death of Michael Jackson. It appears he tried everything life had to offer: fame, sex, money, drugs, and two adopted children. Yet he died starved for love, empty, unfulfilled, and surrounded by a bevy of human vultures who never loved him only used him.
But you don’t have to be beautiful, rich or famous to be starved for love. Many people walk around silently screaming, “For God’s sake won’t someone just love me. Love me – that is all I need.”
Hollywood recognizes this sad dilemma so makes sappy movies about love, and millions watch them. Inane songs are written about love, and we sing them. In our search for love we go through a variety of manipulations and machinations to get someone to love us!
Why do we go through all of this? For one simple reason: God placed within each of us a human shaped void that can only be filled by another person. Substitutes such as money, sports, hobbies, fame, busy schedules and even significant achievements cannot come close to filling the void of having someone to love.
If you’re discouraged about love, I’m here to encourage you. Love is possible because all people are born with the capacity to love. But love is not about self it’s about others. Those who only love self are infantile in their emotional maturity. Until a person learns to love others he/she will be hopelessly stranded on his/her own self-indulgent, self-protecting, self-admiring island of aloneness.
So we must open the most private doors of our lives to exit our selfish hiding places to test the waters, expose an aching heart to another person, and become as vulnerable as we have ever been. Writer C.S. Lewis said, “To love at all is to be vulnerable.”
It is that vulnerability that scares us. We know that if we risk loving someone else that things are going to change, and change is always frightening. Indeed, love is the most powerful agent of change known to mankind. When we love others our priorities are reordered, our values are reassessed, and our relationships restructured.
Love changes the way we look, think, talk, dress, walk, and feel, not just about some special person, but about the whole world. When we love we consider the dreams and happiness of someone else and we willingly seek their happiness before our own. Real love looks not for ways to cage another or keep someone for private use only. Rather, real love looks for opportunities to help others grow and then applauds their success. It sees the best in others, renders aid to those in need, and is always quick to forgive.
If you’re looking for love you must remember this: Those who are loved the most always love others first.
Of all the doors of our lives we must open, the door to our heart affords the greatest opportunity for joy as well as the most likely prospect for sorrow. It is an uncertain emotional investment with no guarantee of return. Yet invest we must, the loneliness of isolation drives us; the desire for intimacy compels us; and the hope of love assures us that somehow all will work out right.
Open your heart to someone today and love them – not for what they can do for you, because of how they perform, or how they look, but because of whom they are. Love someone today and tomorrow and the next day. As you do, that human-shaped void within your heart will begin to be filled, for the more you love the more you shall be loved.
Writer Leo Buscaglia said, “There is nothing greater in life than loving another and being loved in return, for loving is the ultimate of experiences.”
- Seven Reasons We Might Open the Doors of Our Lives to Others – Reason 6: To Grow
- What Could Possibly Go Right?