Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Helplessness of Love

Today I found myself feeling great affection for a group of people, and I thought "the appropriate response to this is humility". I recognize myself as a vessel of a powerful force I neither create nor control. I am not the first nor the greatest to have cared for people. I am subsumed by a Love far greater than myself, which is both thrilling and humbling. That humility is a great gift.

Like most powerful moments of the last few months, this one led me back into my grief. What is grief if not love made futile against absence? I remember years ago sitting with a friend who lost her entire family in a genocide, and loving her so much, and feeling so helpless because no amount of love could ever undo the trauma she had faced. Perhaps it is not my place to un-do it.

I know better now than to wish away those feelings of affection. And yet, on these gloomy fall days, standing in the dark of the chapel, fighting off tears, the love I feel for anyone is seasoned with the knowledge that it has me rendered helpless. I will care for people forever, against futility and darkness, and deal with the gloomy days as they come.

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