The Gift of love enfolding us
enfolds in itself these earthen vessels.
Yet these vessels themselves hold
an immense treasure deep within.
Yet the thing about treasure
is that it is fragile;
for a precious thing
is often under attack.
We tasted love and knew it deeply,
but then something occurred, devastating,
something which I could not foresee.
Or perhaps I could, and should have known?
Yet you are gone now, and have left me aching.
You are gone, leaving me alone with them,
who are ours…yours and mine.
What have I done to cause this?
Is it not my fault?
Unrequited love stings the heart,
burning it with bitter tears,
especially when it was love once requited,
shared, freely, by you and I.
What happened to break the bond between us?
You were my life, my hope, my joy,
and now what is left of this?
An aching space within my heart
which our children themselves cannot fill.
And I cannot turn to these other things
which would numb my heart
but leave me half-alive.
This space turns, I feel it, I glimpse…
it turns to one place alone for strength.
There is a Love beyond faltering,
there is a Love, ever enduring,
ever unbroken and sure.
There is a Love that loves you
even when you yourself fail to love.
And in this Love
I can continue to love you too.
Yet in this Love, too
—in him, the God of Love,
my Life, my Hope, my Joy—
I find this aching heart’s desires
embraced, consoled, and at rest,
filling up the empty space you left.
And even when the image is broken
the Reality itself remains sure.
Even when the union between us
is fractured and, at present, torn apart,
in the Heart of God, in his mercy,
it is as strong as ever, knit by love.
In this alone do I find hope,
even when with these frail eyes
I cannot see the light, the joy.
Joy itself is being begotten, in trial,
in the depths of my heart
surrendered to God in this intense way.
And I believe that love, his Love, enduring,
is victorious over every pain,
over even the most obscuring darkness
…not only the darkness that I feel
and that has enshrouded the family home,
but even, in a mysterious, powerful way,
over the darkness into which you have gone.
And he has the strength, uncontainable,
to pick you up on his shoulders
in even the most distant place
…and to carry you home again.