PARADOXICAL

The faith chronicles

Monday, March 25, 2013

 

"Amor con amor se paga"

Amor con amor se paga. Love is repaid with love. That's what the Spanish mystic St. Teresa of Avila reportedly said. Beautiful.

How have I loved so far? Let me count the ways I am getting love, for a clue, for if I have indeed given real love, I will surely be repaid with real love.

Parents: My relationship with both parents have improved a lot. They seem worried, nay alarmed, at my situation, and I can feel their concern. Despite not being able to give something to them this time around, I don't feel rejected for being useless. This is a great development, as I have harbored terrible resentment for years, especially against my father, though I never talked to him about it, but I'm sure he could feel it. Thanks to God's grace of healing, I was able to let go of my expectations of my father, many of which were unfair considering his cultural background, and I too hope he has felt that I have 'set him free.'

Siblings: I receive love and caring in various degrees. I am confident that if I needed more help, which I pray to God won't be the case, they will rally behind me, they will unite to help me, even when I felt obligated, burdened, and a bit resentful because I feared for my own future, when I helped send five of them to college while standing as the family's breadwinner. I wish they'd remember what I did for them, but hope I would never ever oblige them to return the favor. One thing I hate is love that is conditional because I know how much it hurts.

Relatives: I am pretty sure they care about me, but up to what extent, I am not sure. Maybe it's because I didn't love them enough out of fear maybe? I don't know.

Close friends: Well, this is a mixed bag. I am quite disappointed with a close friend who is good to me only because he is getting something from the friendship. Have I been user-friendly to my friends? A fair-weather one? Hope not that selfish, hope not.

Brothers and sisters in community. Most members were elated to see me during the last assembly I attended. In fact, there were only two or three who didn't express that feeling. I can sense how much they love me and care for me. One elder told me directly he'd invite me for coffee one time because he's been missing me. I was touched, for he is among my spiritual fathers in community. That alone is enough. Another texted me something like, If you need anything, just text me. That was brave of him. What if I actually asked anything, right? Again, that little gesture was encouraging. An elder brother, my current pastoral leader, actually went out of his way to visit me in my place that I was so embarrassed because he got lost and it was a lot of trouble. He did it not even once but twice. There are members who now and then volunteer health info especially those who've been through panic attacks themselves. At least one texts me inspirational message everyday. I am also grateful to a couple who are willing to fetch me each time they use the service road nearest my place. With all these, I can say I am being loved in the community I chose to love and serve, warts and all. I can hardly complain. Who am I to?

As for my readers, it's very telling. I seem to have lost everyone. How does that reflect on how much I conveyed love through my writing?

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