Hearts for Love Alone

Photo Credit: (c) 2014 Linda M. Rhinehart Neas

"I will break their hearts of stone, Give them hearts for love alone." - Dan Schutte

The words above are from one of my favorite hymns, Here I am Lord, which we sang at my ordination several years ago.  This hymn is about answering the call of Spirit to serve others.  In the chorus, we sing, "Here I am, Lord...I have heard you calling in the night." This is based on the Bible stories in which Isaiah and Samuel, at different times, answer the call to serve their brothers and sisters.

We are all called to serve. Each of us has special gifts that are meant to be shared with the world. Our gifts are many and varied - compassion, music, healing, art, writing, speaking, raising children, raising crops - the list is endless. What is important is that we understand that we are called to serve others with these gifts. To turn our backs on this call is to turn our backs on all that we hold sacred.

Some of us turn our backs on this call because we have been hurt by others, because we have lost our faith in goodness, because we no longer trust that what we do will matter to anyone.  Some of us stop listening to the call because the lure of fame, fortune and power deafen us. These turn our hearts to stone. Hearts of stone are consumed by hate, for ourselves, for others, and for the world. Hate manifests in many forms - self-abuse, abuse of others, neglect, deceit, oppression and greed, to name a few.

Hate in any form is like a cancer that spreads quickly and virulently through every cell, unless it is stopped. Love, compassion, kindness, peace-filled actions stop hate.

Often, we have heard or read stories of how a random act of kindness changed someone's opinion of another. We have also been told that people don't understand until the thing that they hate is given a face they can see. When the word they associate with their hate suddenly becomes a family living on the street whose children go to school with their child, things can change.

In these turbulent times, let us all open our hearts to Love. Let us look for that Love in the eyes of those we meet, regardless of color, gender, nationality, political or sexual preference. Let us all share the Love we have with all who cross our path, knowing that Love is infinite - the more we share it, the more we have to share. Let us be fearless in our sharing, in our acceptance of others, in our actions to bring peace to our world. Our strength lies within. Let us call on Spirit, by whatever name we use, to help us in our fearless resistance to hate.

Amen, Ameen, Blessed Be, Aho


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