So yesterday after mass, I went to the Kolache Factory to get some grub. While driving over to get food, I was listening to a Rexband song, Sonrise where the end of each verse was the statement, ‘I need your love’.
I got to the store and bought my kolaches, and as I was walking out, I realized the store had been playing Lady Gaga’s ‘Bad romance’ and the line she kept repeating as I walked out the door was ‘ I want your love’.
|Huh. Well, that’s counterproductive to the topic of this post.|
Suddenly it struck me how the both of them were singing about the same desire, but from two different perspectives. Indeed, we all need love. It is a deep longing placed within each and everyone of our hearts, deny it all you want, you know its there. That gut feeling that every musician and poet writes about? That feeling of solidarity with someone, like ‘Yes, this person understands me, they’re my own, I am alone no longer!’.
This is why we look for ‘the one’, we want friends, we want family, we want a brotherhood or sisterhood- someplace where we know we belong, i.e., a place where we are understood and loved. I believe that even people who join gangs have this desire, a need to be loved by someone enough that they would stand by, fight for and even die for each other- what is that but love? All through high school, that eternal struggle ‘to belong’ is also this same need for love. Yes, when I said love, I didn’t mean a purely romantic love, Eros. I meant love as a whole- one that covers the spectrum of companionship, romance, blood ties, bonds, brotherhood or sisterhood etc.
We all desire this love in our lives and we search for it everywhere, to fill that ‘hole in our heart’. Some of us may turn to the ecstasy or the various highs derived from substance abuse, which gives a euphoric experience that may momentarily imitate some semblance of that bliss we seek. Some of us may look for methods to make us forget about the real things we want in life by perhaps inflicting more pain or by distracting ourselves and filling our time so we don’t have to think and reflect . Some of us may turn to family to fulfill that need and may be satisfied, but still find ourselves wanting ‘more’. Some of us may turn to friends and companionship to chase out the loneliness. Some of us may fill our time with video games, movies, shows and ‘the internet’ to escape as well and occupy our time. There are so many options the world gives us today to fulfill this desire for love.
|Does anyone love me yet? Anyone? Fine, maybe more cocaine will make it all feel better.|
The million dollar question though, is does they really fulfill you and successfully fill that ‘hole in our heart’ completely? Or do you find yourself returning to those same old thoughts when you have a moment with your mind? I must quote St. Augustine here because he was a man who looked everywhere for ‘that thing’ and he said, “Our hearts are restless Lord, until they rest in you”. He certainly had more life experience and more intellect and knowledge than me and if he felt he found his answer in God, then I for one, am willing to take him at his word and at least give it a try. In fact, in my life, I did. There was a time when I purposely and stubbornly looked around for that same joy and peace I got from God and I had to admit defeat in the end and, ‘Alright Lord, I give in. You happy now? I’ll come back home’.
I realized, that the only true answer that wasn’t a temporary fix or a cheap knock-off brand to the real thing I was looking for- to go to the source and creator of love to satisfy my desire fully, realizing that no man or woman (let alone objects or creations) would ever be able to complete me like He can. He can fill in those crevices and be the concrete that binds together our ill fated attempts at garnering love and satisfaction.
I always find it interesting that in the oh-so-many love songs and sonnets and poetry that have been penned in the name of love, there is the declaration of ‘I will love you forever’ or ‘I want to be loved forever’. You almost never hear someone sing ‘I will love you for 40 years/40 months/72 days’ or some finite number like that. Even when someone sings ‘At least for tonight let’s be togehter’ – it still stinks so highly of the sweaty palmed, hoping against hope that something more may happen that will stretch past that one night. We were made, I think, desiring an eternal/everlasting and a perfect love. Unfortunately, if we were to answer to reality, we know that no human being can love us forever- at most, we can love someone for a lifetime, and you can’t even call it a whole lifetime of love because very few people meet their love within that first or second decades of life even. And we also know that human love is far from perfect as well, because well, we’re human- we can only forgive so many times before we snap and have to vent to a friend or loved one. Yes, of course, we try our best to be perfect for our loved one’s but everyone has their good and bad days. Our love is very flawed and very limited time wise. So where then can we go to quench this desire for an infinite, everlasting and perfect love? Well, how about an eternal and infinite being who is the origin of love itself?
This is why, in any relationship in life, its important to remember that there’s always a third person there, a third person that is the only one who can love perfectly while our human love stands deeply flawed before it. Hence, if you want perfect love, perfect friendship, perfect relationships with family, you cannot depend fully on an imperfect person to do that. You have to comprehend that people, including yourself, will probably fall a little short, because well again, we’re human, but we can rely on that third and perfect person to fill in the gaps.
I think of this as the reason why a marriage happens in a church- its a reminder that its not just about these 2 people or families coming together because if romantic comedies and christmas-time family movies have taught us anything, its that it is nearly impossible for people to get along without a flood of wacky misunderstandings and people violently tackling each other to the floor. A marriage within a church and before an altar, with a priest standing between the bride and groom, reminds everyone gathered that this is not a human affair, it is a sacred one. We need to remmeber that third person the priest represents at that altar because in the most flawed and loneliest of moments when no human can seem to fill that deep and dark feeling within us, it is that third person who will love it beyond fullfillment, until we overflow out into those that surround us.
So where do you go to discard the loneliness, to forget that hole or hurt, to find love?