How Many Kinds of Love?
The other day my youngest son and I were about the watch an NFL football game that included a team that is our chosen teams' most reviled rival. It's so rough in our house that to say this teams' name aloud is akin to uttering a vile curse word.
But as my son and I were watching the pre-game show, the network included a story it had done on one of the players on [That Team] and the work he was doing in his community.
Because he'd had a hard time when he was growing up and struggled to do well in school while under the stress of a chaotic family life, this player decided to do everything he could to give at-risk kids an opportunity to change their stars.
He formed a foundation to support his efforts and created a lab for kids to learn science, develop skills in engineering, auto repair, art, graphic design and so much more.
As he was relating why it was so important for him to do all of this, the player got choked up and began to cry, and I found myself getting choked up along with him.
My son, quietly said, "I don't like that he plays for [That Team], but he seems like a really good guy." I told him I thought so, too. I then went on to say that despite the fact that I talked a lot of trash about [That Team], it was full of human beings, and some of them were pretty awesome people.
I never cease to be amazed at how God just seems to love to turn my pre-conceived notions about people upside down. I also never cease to be amazed at how learning the right lesson can give me opportunities to actually act like the person I imagine myself to be.
Some time ago, I read a beautiful poem by Mary Oliver, and I wrote down this stanza, which spoke to me deeply:
How many kinds of lovemight there be in the world,and how many formations might they makeand who am I everto imagine I could knowsuch a marvelous business?