Home > relationships > Love Can Bite You and Leave Teeth Marks

Love Can Bite You and Leave Teeth Marks

Hi, my name is Ken, and I’m a recovering self-help junkie. 
“I have found the paradox that if I love until it hurts, then there is no hurt, only more love.” ~Mother Teresa
I’ve spent over half of an average lifetime to get here and it isn’t quite where I had planned to be at the marker called my mid-life moment. That is, where I sit tonight staring at this computer monitor, writing once again. But I’ve learned more lessons than I’d anticipated, traveling the road to this street I’m parked on named Right Now.
I’ve learned that what you thought was love can turn up empty, and that the people you never guessed would love you can. I’ve learned that those you were sure as death and taxes would love you, are just as capable as anybody of failing to. I’ve learned that love is never devoid of risks, and love involves risk if anything.
Heartaches may not await the faint of heart when it comes to love, but the faint of heart inevitably die of a lonely one. 
I’ve also learned once again that while love can be deep, life is fragile and can turn on a dime. I’ve had my precious writer friend and new found mentor sucumb to his sudden bout with terminal cancer, my best buddy from high school hang himself after losing the fight of his life with depression, and a close comrade fall prey to a longstanding battle with infidelity and in turn found myself on the other end of the phone as I listened to his wife of 30 years weep tears of agony and sorrow in return. All this—within the last three months. Friends I have loved and hurts that have followed.
It’s these types of harsh and puzzling happenings that feed my fears and fuel my doubts about love. Because had I never loved, I wouldn’t have been hurt. And when I am hurt the questions surface.
C.S. Lewis writes, “To love is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken.  If you want to be sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even an animal.  Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket of coffin of your selfishness.  But in the casket – safe, dark, motionless, airless – it will change.  It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.  The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation.  The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.”
Lewis continues, “If a man is not uncalculating towards the earthly beloveds whom he has seen, he is none the more likely to be so towards God whom he has not.  We shall draw nearer to God, not by trying to avoid the sufferings inherent in all loves, but by accepting them and offering  hem to Him; throwing away all defensive armour.  If our hearts need to be broken, and if He chooses this way in which they should break, so be it.”  
It’s safe to say that a life spent trying to protect oneself from being hurt will turn out to be a life which never knows the joy of what it is to love or to be loved. And you can take this to the bank—if you want a love that puts a spring in your step and makes your heart skip a beat it’ll never happen if you’re not willing to risk being hurt and love first.
Yes, love can bite you and leave teeth marks.
But only love can heal you.         
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  1. June 13, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Absolutely great article,Ken! Love does come at a price. All of the pets I take in and love as family will get sick and die and I will suffer with them as they go. It is easier not to keep saving these animals, but that is the wrong price.

    My price for following Christ is steep. I am willing to pay whatever to stand in the truth that he has given me. I have considered the cost. I choose to stand and believe.

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