Most mornings as I drive Liam to school and myself to work, we listen to the radio. Sometimes he’s requesting a favorite song or movie soundtrack; other times he acquiesces to my desire to catch several minutes of news as the day begins. He did so this morning, and we caught the tail end of the 7:00am hour of Morning Edition on WFDD and were surprised by the sound of love.

The piece we heard began with the words of poet Kwame Alexander: “There’s a lot of love around us, but if our hearts aren’t open, we won’t see it.” Mr. Alexander had invited students and teachers to fill in the blank with this prompt: “Love is ___.” He noted that over 2000 people responded with their words. From first graders in Virginia to high schoolers in Massachusetts, all who were listening heard the witness of love through the voices and perspectives of adolescents. It was a beautiful gift to me, on this Valentine’s Day, to hear a lengthy take on love, where stories and poems of children filled the airwaves with their read on love in all its forms. It sounded like this:

“Love is when your dad comes home from war.”
“Love is kind, love is peace, love is happiness and sadness, because sometimes someone leaves you and you still love them. Love is everything.”
“Love is stronger than mean. I know this because I see it in my heart. I see it in my teacher’s smile. I see it when I’m with my family. I know you’re loved too. I see it in your eyes.”
“Love is when my heart opens, and I see chocolate hearts twirling around my eyes.”
“Love is flying to the moon when you see each other.”
“Love is flower, and you are its seed.”
“Love is scary. Love is learning. Love is confusing.”
“Love is saying sorry, even when I hate to be wrong.”
“Love is when even though you might not want to do it, you do it because you love your parents.”
“Love is accepting everyone, no matter their beliefs, no matter what they look like.”
“Difficult but not insurmountable, love is a mountain, a journey not undertaken lightly, a reward not gained easily.”
“Love is a day full of hugs, a safe place to stay, to be.”

To these, I add those beloved words of Paul, who describes a sacred God-love available to every one of us. It centers his Valentine’s Day and every day we live and love with each other: “Love is patient, love is kind. Love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”

No matter our age or life stage, may our hearts be open to be formed and transformed by such love!

Together in the work of Love,
Pastor Emily

You can find the whole Morning Edition report at the link::

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