This morning, I rolled over and rested my head on my husband’s chest.
He stroked my hair, kissed my forehead and rubbed my arm with his other hand.
There is a tenderness in the way he holds me. A safety and a calming reassurance of the good that is in the world if we would only stop long enough to breathe it into our being.
Last night, Reagan lay beside me, head resting on my arm in comfortable companionship. I pulled her close to me, feeling the warmth of her and relishing in this extension of my heart only inches away.
When she was a baby, she would sleep on my chest, muzzled against me, resting against the beat of my heart.
I hugged a friend yesterday. Felt strength given, a strength released as we exchanged an affection that reminded us that the work week was almost over and we had made it through, together.
I love to sit and hold my grandmother’s hand. Feel the aged wisdom in her veins against my thumb.
When my parents embrace me, I feel their encouragement come through their arms and see pride in their eyes when they pull away.
When I see a cousin, a sight for sore eyes, and she pulls me into an exuberant hug, I feel her excitement and gladness, just at seeing me.
I squeezed my sister tight this week. Joy on both of our faces just to see each other, reminded that we are bonded, and through life’s ups and downs, we always have each other to lean on.
If you believe, as I do, that Love is the very nature of the Divine, you can experience the supernatural presence of it in every display of human affection.
Romantic love reminds me of God’s pursuit of me, and the satisfaction of being wholly surrendered to His comforting embrace.
Parental love reminds me of His constant presence within me, and of His pride in His most prized creation.
Friendship love reminds me of His commitment to walk beside me, helping me through the darkest of days, ever ready to catch me when I inevitably fall.
Sibling love reminds me of the brother I have in Christ, someone who has experienced every emotion that I do, able to empathize and give me strength simply by knowing that I do not walk alone.
The love of my grandmother reminds me of the wisdom that I always have available to me. Her love for me goes back to the earliest of my days, before I was even born as she loved my mother who would eventually love me. As her hands have aged, so has her maturation of love for those that descended from her.
In the Episcopal Church, we celebrate many sacraments: the Eucharist (holy communion), baptism, marriage.
A sacrament is described as “an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace”.
Believing that, outward expressions of love also reflect the inward and spiritual grace given to me and others by a Higher Power.
I love those I am closest to and express it outwardly without even thinking.
But loving others, and showing it, doesn’t come as naturally. But it should. If I am to be like Christ, it should.
I think of Princess Diana. She was known for her humanitarian work across the globe, much of it with “untouchable” people. Those who had AIDS.
Jesus was the same way. Touching the untouchables, and in doing so, releasing the love of His Father.
Every time we do the same, we bring the kingdom of heaven a lite closer to earth.
Recognize the sacrament of love within yourself. Share it freely.
It is through Love that we are fully known, and it is through our outward expression of it that we have the divine opportunity to make Love known to others.