This time of the year can be very difficult for those of us who don’t have a romantic love interest. The stores have displays of chocolates and flowers and today I heard an ad for soft pajamas that a man can buy for his lady. Couples buy each other gifts or plan romantic outings but the rest of us can feel that we aren’t included. It can be like “who will you be kissing on New Year’s Eve?”
Love isn’t just for lovers though, because it is one of the basic requirements for life, right up there with food and shelter. People who don’t experience love every day soon become depressed, feel hopeless and eventually get sick. Babies need to be touched by loving hands in order to thrive.
Whether you are part of a couple or not, you can reach out to the people around you in very simple but profound ways. Have a conversation with someone and really listen. Turn off your phone and make eye contact. Make it your purpose to hear what is behind the words of the other person. What are they feeling? Can you hear a need or pain in what they say? You don’t have to solve any problems, just listen. In fact, please don’t try to solve their problem. Listening carefully can help them to find solutions that will be much better.
Maybe for someone on the street, saying “Hello” or even just smiling can make a stranger’s day. The guy begging for money wants more than just spare change, he wants to be noticed. The money is easy to give but making eye contact and the gift of a greeting will mean a lot more.
The people who need your attention the most probably live in your home or are close family members. Instead of giving a box of chocolates this year, why not try a gift of time…uninterrupted time. This goes for the children, the aging parents, an aunt or uncle who lives alone, a neighbour…
If you have a “significant other” express your gratitude to them and for them. Maybe she is longing to know if you really see her. He may wonder if you know how hard he works for you and your family.
“What the world needs now, is love sweet love. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of.”
Songwriters: Burt F. Bacharach / Hal David. What the World Needs Now Is Love lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc, BMG Rights Management, Royalty Network
May this month of love be a special time for you as you find others to thank, encourage, listen to, and bless. I bless you with much love!