“Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained.”

— C.S. Lewis

Let us begin our brand new week with love for all we meet.  The Thanksgiving holiday is over.  The crazy weekend of shopping and football has had its time.  Now we return to the routines that are the realities of our lives.  So many of us have taken time to list all the things we are thankful for; and many of those lists include people who touch our lives in special ways.  A friend who stopped by yesterday shared that someone had told her, “everyone should have at least one friend they can call at any hour of the day or night to share sorrow or joy.”  She wanted to tell me that I am that person for her.  I am honored; and I still feel warm inside this morning, although the moment is long gone.  It is a joyous thing to be recognized, affirmed, and held dear just for being ourselves.  Any gift of friendship this woman thinks she receives from me was returned ten times over in her simple statement.

Let us carry love for all into the New Year.  I will remember how a simple statement made me feel validated and encouraged me to go on loving.  I will try to remember to do that for others and love them for the things that make them unique and not only for the things that make them similar to me.  Can you imagine what sort of world we could create if we loved people with a steady wish for their greatest good?  Too often, we judge others by our own standards rather than seeing their unique and different contribution to the greatest good of all.  Let us love our own beauty; but let us not hang it as a filter that requires everyone else to pass through it in order to be considered lovable.  Let us step outside of our egos and recognize, affirm, and love the beauty in others that might also encourage us to grow.  Let us love one another so that each of us moves closer to our own ultimate good.  It is a warm thing to be loved for who you are.