This posting has been long in gestation and today in Church I got the final threads to finish it off as promised previously... It is neither a lengthy or noble dissertation, just something that I have felt needs to be said.
Life is a procession, some may call it a comedy of errors, others call it a learning process. I call it an adventure these days...We all get hurt by life at some time or another, some build defensive walls and attitudes to protect them from the hurt. Others carry on regardless in their selfish ways. Others hide away in despair. Others take on the poisoned chains of pride.
Then there are people that want to throw off the yoke of past experiences to be able to live again as we are supposed to.Joyfully and adventurously.I am one of those people, but before I could do that I had to love myself again, to see that even with my bruised ego, broken heart and mangled self worth I was a person that was worthy to be a creature of joy again. Part of this was accepting and realizing that God loved me no matter what I did or had done. He had made me and He had loved me enough to create a way for me to be with Him eternally. How could I doubt my worth if the God of creation considered me worthy?
Once this was out of the way I realized that I had to get rid of my fortress that I had built around me as a result of past experiences.I had to get my psyche naked, this was the toughest part, because when you are exposed like this the flame of a passing soul is like a blowtorch, some have a flame of hatred, others of jealousy, even friendship scorches...
However if you persevere the freedom of not hiding behind a wall or mask is bliss itself, you know that you mean what you say and do what you mean. This honesty is sometimes disconcerting to others catching them off guard and flowing over them like a tsunami. I keep forgetting that part...
What I also have found is that I have lost the art of picking up hidden cues... I do not expect them because of my directness and openness... why should others play games when I cannot? But they do, mostly not intentionally but on a constant basis... I have to retrain myself to read these signs I suppose. Then I go read a recent study on kisses and I seem to be once again the exception to the rule as my goal when kissing is not to end up in the boudoir... I put a lot of emotional value in a kiss, to me a kiss is not part of what they say, a kiss is like cement for my heart, it fills in the cracks and makes me whole again. Yes it does set my heart racing but it also tells me that I am not alone in the adventure of life or the building of a relationship. Without a kiss it just a great friendship... but with a kiss once in a while there is a hint of something that may well grow to become that once in lifetime experience.
Being a gentleman is also a given when one has chosen the path I have, considering the other person and respecting their wishes is worth it, trust me, as the other way of being a boor and throwing a tantrum is not going to get you any points either. What I am talking about is when you have told the object of your affections your feelings, respect what you get back, I know it is hard to have to reign in your emotions but unless you expect instant gratification you are far better off being a friend than earning instant enmity. I actually think that the Victorian era had perfected this as a man would very often court a woman for many years before even telling her what he felt, rather getting to know her over time through many conversations and countless letters... we have forgotten that art gentlemen! Time to back track and do things in a proper and fitting fashion I believe. Chastity has it's own reward...
However as mentioned in a previous post, I think modern men are losers when it comes to understanding their purpose in the scheme of things, I am not excusing myself either, I have learnt that lesson well and have been shown the error of my ways regarding our responsibility to children we bring into the world. Only when we understand what the true meaning of being a Gentleman is will this change. Leaving a child in the lurch is a cowardly way to excuse
yourself from your responsibility. Just as God loves you you should love that child and do all you can to provide for this gift you received. At the same time if you had followed the proper order of things you may well never have gotten in this place at all... passion has both a price and a place.
Now all I want is to nurture those I love, to protect and serve and lead by example, in some small way show them the love I have been shown. When I see one of them hurting I wish I could take that cloak and put it on myself and bear their pain instead. I cry more easily because of this... I seem pray more often as well.
Lastly I leave you with this test of love that I only recently came to understand in full and without this any relationship is doomed to failure:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. - I Corinthians 13:4-8a (NIV)