love hurts ::. swollen fingers. achy joints. splinters. fatigue. a beat up pair of nikes. nasty tanlines. the result of a ten hour drive to lima, ohio across miles of farmland with 15 passengers. we all took part in a pilot faith-builders service program through habitat for humanity. it was a great week where we actually built something from nothing. it was not just a house but a home. my own spiritual house was under construction. i got to understand more deeply that love does often require pain in the offering.
we may find ourselves living day to day, especially as we get older and experienced in life, raising formidable walls in order not to get hurt or allow others to expose our true state of weakness, the real us. to love and to even be loved requires that we become vulnerable to potential pain, to being hurt, to come just as we are. naked and bare. we may find that doing so allows us to remain true to ourselves. perhaps, in our age of broken relationships we just don’t want to be hurt again because it runs so deep and long. we cannot build a great house on top of our weak, broken, or damaged past contructions. these need to be either torn down completely or restored with precision and expertise by a master builder. to love others in life begs us to be unraveled, twisted, uncomfortable. it’s alright because it is love. this poetic reality is experienced in the sanctity of the marriage bed. women can understand the nature of this much more than men. i realize increasingly how fragile my wife was before she married me and in many ways she still is. how easy it is to exploit and attack one other’s weaknesses. it is all too easy to hurt instead of love.
My hands are tied / My body bruised, she’s got me with
Nothing to win and / Nothing left to lose
And you give yourself away / And you give yourself away
And you give / And you give / And you give yourself away
with or without you — u2 — the joshua tree
i’m still finding new bruises today and i just smile. every slight pain brings a sense of pleasure and satisfaction of having spent a week with people i hardly know, laboring hard to build a house for someone we never met. don’t i sound masochistic in all this? we became acquianted with each other’s habits and annoyances. we looked pass shortcomings and tried to become servants. i’m deeply in love with a crew of teenagers, peers, and a woman who deserves a home and not just a house.
Narrator: The first step to eternal life is you have to die. I just don’t want to die without a few scars.
— Fight Club (Palahniuk)