So I'm writing this at about 3:49 a.m. on a Friday morning. For what earthly reason could I be up at this unholy hour?
Journalism. But that's not what I'm writing about today.
Instead, I want to write about love. Why? Because that's what came into my mind. That's what I think people need to hear and read about.
So love. What could a 22 year-old college student possibly know about love?
Not a whole lot when compared to the couples who have been together 15, 30, 45 years. But I do know what love isn't.
Love isn't selfish. Love gets that glass of water, makes that call or checks on the kids in the middle of the night.
Love doesn't question. It doesn't matter why you're not feeling well or why tonight the demons are worse. Love answers and comforts.
And love is most definitely not cruel. Love does not spit out cruel words unthinkingly in order to get the better of someone. Love smiles.
Love is all about this desire, this need to empty ourselves out, to lose ourselves in the good of another person. There's this great Greek word called "kenosis" which means "self-emptying."
It's this great concept and only when we empty ourselves, are we truly free to act and to love. The culture we live in keeps us caught up in the individual wants and desires we face daily. But that will never make you happy, it will never fill you.
You have to empty yourself for someone else. And that is one of the hardest, most courageous things you could possibly do.
I've loved romantically once. But I was afraid to give it all away, to let myself go out of the picture. And now that's exactly where I am. Out of the picture. Now before you get all sad for me, read on.
That love taught me how to love better, to love more deeply and to love more freely.
St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta has this beautiful quote where she says, "Love to be real, it must cost—it must hurt—it must empty us of self."
And she is so right. Love even when it hurts. Actually, I take that back. Love ESPECIALLY when it hurts. That's the kind of love worth having.
If it hurts, you know it's real. So be real. Be raw and aching. Be a lover and a fighter. Feel every ache, every pain and then...let it go. Empty yourself out. Because you can't just be a well, greedily storing love.
You have to give it and give it freely. Love is never divided, it never fades and if it's real love it never leaves us.
So give, and give and give until you think you can't keep doing it. And like a miracle you'll realize you still can give love to everyone you meet.
Why? Because someone or some event taught you how to love better.