Lately I’ve been telling more of my patients that they are loved.
And when I personalize it, when I tell them, “I love you,” the response is often overwhelming for both parties. I spoke those three words to an elderly woman recently. Initially, I had intended only to reassure her that she was loved. “You know you are loved, right?” When she asked me what I had said, I simplified my message: I love you. This beloved patient of mine quickly covered her face with her hands, began to weep, and shared in a whisper that she loved me too. Another woman, a former drug addict estranged from her family, in disbelief embraced me with her bony body after my expression of love to her.
Powerful words I love you.
1 John chapter 4 talks about divine love. “God is love” we read in verse 16. “Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.”
I wasn’t exactly living in love last night for sure!
Sadly I spent a good portion of the evening with my husband judging people at a Jackson Browne concert we attended for FREE. I found one woman in particular rather agitating as she quickly quelched any and all dancing that erupted in her vicinity where she sat on the ledge of a main walk way. “Who is SHE to stop others from swaying and moving to the music?” I thought throughout the concert. “What a joyless woman! She isn’t even in the official seating, grassy knoll or assigned seats. She chose to sit in a main throughway. She should just deal with it or move.”
From 1 John 4: 11-12: Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
Perhaps I needed to whisper words of love and kindness to the grumpy woman at the concert even more than I already do with my patients. Perhaps I should have followed my instinct (when I wasn’t being so judgmental!) and invited her to join us on our blanket away from the dancers and endless by-passers.
In truth, instead of passing judgment, I should have passed along some divine love, whereby expanding God’s residency within me and maybe, just maybe, even within her!
Today and everyday, my friends…Pass love, not judgment!