Loving in good times and bad

HINTS AND TRACES - Fr. Roy Cimagala (The Freeman) - March 2, 2021 - 12:00am

That’s how our love should be. It should be stable and firm in all kinds of weather and seasons in life. It should remain alive and throbbing in any circumstance and condition. It should be universal in scope, excluding no one in its concern.

Whether at work or at play, at home, in the office, church or beach, the loving should continue to beat. Whether we are doing something intellectual or manual, technical or artistic, we have to see to it that it’s love that drives us. Or as expressed in the marriage vows, it should remain unfading “for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health…till death do us part.”

When we do our daily accounting in the examination of conscience before going to bed, we should see to it that through all the drama of the day, whether things went well or not, the net effect or the bottom line should be that there is growth in our love. It’s like having a profit or at least a make-even in our business transactions. We should try to avoid incurring some loss.

We would know that a growth of love is achieved at the end of the day because when things are going well, we would be most thankful to God and to everybody else, and resolve to do more things, more self-giving.

We avoid getting self-contented that would put a stop to our serving God and others which is how love is concretely expressed. When love is genuine and strong, it will never say enough in its self-giving.

Also, when love is genuine, it will never count the cost involved in self-giving, even when not only is it rejected but also when it is violated. When love is genuine, we would consider what would appear in human terms as a loss as actually a gain, following what Christ said that he “who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or field for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.” (Mt 19,29)

And when times are bad as when we committed a mistake or even a sin, love is shown when we are quick to ask forgiveness from God and from anybody whom we may have wronged in some way. More than that, love is also manifested when we have the desire to make up for whatever mistake, failure, or sin we may have committed.

Or when we find ourselves in some difficult situation as when we are in some crisis, love is shown when we are willing to bear it, convinced that by so doing we would actually be identifying ourselves very closely with Christ in his redemptive passion and death on the cross. Love is also shown when we are convinced that by bearing these difficulties, we would be helping others in their spiritual struggles.

Love is also manifested when in spite of being misunderstood, insulted, and given unfair treatment, we still continue to think and act well towards those who may have done these things. We would be quick to forgive and be magnanimous, never wanting to give in to the urge for revenge or to make even.

We should be loving in both the good times and bad!

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