“Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.” –Shawshank Redemption 1994
I am sure that many chase after a love story that involves a man falling head over heels over a girl, offers the world to her, she falls in love and this can easily progress to a ‘you and me against the world’ kind of story. Or maybe the ideal Christian love story of meeting in a bible study group, and finding your ‘non-negotiables and negotiables’ all merged in one awesome person. And of course, let’s not forget the lucky ones who meet their loves at a young age, ride their bikes together, climb trees together and find that they had each other all along. I can make a list of all the love stories that we all long to be written for us but unfortunately do not belong to us. I think the most forgotten stories, and yet the most beautiful and transformative ones are the stories of the unrequited love.
There are people in this world with hearts so big that they can and freely take up the challenge of loving others unconditionally. They have been pegged as the “martyrs”, seeking to love another in spite of the sacrifice it might entail on their part, but I’ve come to reflect on whether that would totally be a bad thing.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we should chase after a person who is obviously using us, abusing our kindness and stomping our hearts. No. What I’m saying is, if you see another, and all the good he or she holds regardless of their past or current circumstances, why are you not to love them? If you see a diamond under mountains of dirt, who are you not to caress the dirt away so that you may see the light reflect on every facet of that person? Is that not a risk worth taking?
People who constantly love wholeheartedly and totally, they are the people full of hope. They love with no conditions. They know that love was freely given to them and they will never run out. They are the people who received a tender kiss of a Savior on their wounds and find no greater calling than to allow another to experience the same. They are the unselfish and they are also the greatly pained.
When you love someone, there is no assurance that you will receive the love you desire back, but that does not in anyway decrease the value of the love you have so freely given or the transformative work of that love in you. You are the ‘agape’ lover. The lover who seeks to love as Christ loves, without boundaries, without condition, without any thought for themselves; All because you see some good in another and are willing to work with it.
But I promise you, one day dear Agape lover, all your pain and efforts will bear fruit. All those times you remained in the ache full of hope in the unknown, they will gain their meaning. Every sunset you had to watch alone will start to look like your Promise-keeper wooing you, every rustle from a breeze passing through a three, God serenading you; and in those moments you will find yourself completely and thoroughly loved by a God that sees you.
And just when you least expect it, your hope will come alive in every possible hue of every possible color, for your Promise-keeper is good and He will not fail you.