“LOVE IS REFLECTED IN LOVE”
Those are the first words I learned in Sunday School about a million years ago.
I never forgot them.
And these last few days they’ve acted as a kind of antidote for the horrific acts of hatred committed by a lone gunman inside the high school he’d attended in Parkland, Florida.
“Oh, my God!” you could hear the country cry out, “Please, not again!!”
What are we to embrace in the midst and throes of such horrific, inexplicable “evil?” Luckily, we have a worthy, powerful, indefatigable and superior opponent for hatred:
One has only the assistant football coach at Parkland High School to look to. He threw himself on a pile of kids who were trying to hide themselves from the shooter. He lost his own life – but none of the kids he shielded did. That’s love.
In the end, Hate’s power can’t hold a candle to Love’s – not if it’s used at full strength.
But Love needs us to be there. Love needs us to show ourselves - not just some of the time but all of the time.
We must be the conduit for Love. And who better? Who better to demonstrate the power of love in the biggest and the smallest ways – and all the ways in between – than us? And to invite people to “pay it forward?” No one.
If there are enough of us, and there are, we could beat hate. How? Well, in part by using positive reinforcement. (The good thing about positive reinforcement is that it works just as well with grownups as it does with children.)
So what do we do? We positively reinforce people – big, little – rich, poor – grownups – children…everyone we come in contact with, who love - wholeheartedly and without judging.
Just to demonstrate how easy it could be, here’s a story…
A woman in a supermarket in Manhattan, was packing one last bag in her already-full shopping cart and by mistake knocked over her very large (and very full) purse. All its contents spilled and clattered to the floor in every direction.
One woman sighed, looked disgusted, stepped around the clutter and walked off.
Another woman pushed her own shopping cart to the side to help the woman who’d dropped her purse and with the help of several other kind women (and one man) knelt down, picked up every last item and placed them “safely” back where they belonged.
One of the women said as she finished, “Boy! Do I feel good! Hey Guys, are we good, or what? Where’s our next assignment?? Don’t stop me now!!??”
And all the other “helpers” said, “Me, too! Me, too!”
And the woman with the purse said, “I love you guys. I’ll never forget you. I just wish I could repay you!”
“Just pay it forward,” another said. And they all hugged each other.
That story’s about love. And how good we feel when we create it; when we “show” it – even in the smallest ways. And about how important it is for all of us to be looking for more ways to demonstrate it. But it won’t be hard.
Because…Love is Reflected in Love.