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Is "Once in a Lifetime" worth your life?

As a personal policy, I do not post other people's writings. However, sometimes you have to break your own rules. Evan Lathrop, a friend from Tulsa and student at Oklahoma Christian University, has the following to say about the risk of loving someone:

Is "Once in a Lifetime" worth your life?

You're not alone, Brown Eyes. These questions scare me every single day of my life...

How do you know when it's worth it? When is it safe to say the words, to take the plunge, to open the door to commitment, knowing that heartbreak could be hiding behind it? When can you safely give your heart away, trusting that it will remain whole and be treasured forever?

I would say Never. I think Love is a chance you take. It's a gamble. You offer it in hopes that it will be returned, but you don't know for sure. You can't. Otherwise what is the point? To love where there is no risk is to love where there is no choice. How else could Love be a sure thing? Love is only safe when the recipient has no choice but to return it. So you love a robot. You love something that has no chance to turn you down, no chance to reject you, no chance to break your heart. Your Love is safe.

...But it's also dead. Your Love will never grow. How can it? They cannot choose to love you less, so how can they choose to love you more? How can they choose to love you better and deeper and stronger than they did the day before? That's the catch isn't it? Safe Love never changes....ever. It will never get worse, but it will never get better. There are no breakups and makeups, no survivals and revivals, no heart-wrenching goodbyes and no heart-warming sighs. It is an answering machine instead of a voice; a handshake instead of a hug. It says, "Come this close but no closer; try this hard but no harder." It is packaged in a nice, neat box with a nice, neat ribbon and it will remain on a nice, neat shelf in a nice, neat closet until it is forgotten.

I don't believe that is Love. That is the clear plastic wrapping on the real gift. Love protects, it doesn't eliminate. Love hopes, it doesn't guarantee. Love trusts, it doesn't demand. Love never gives up because it has a reason to try.

Love never fails. Not because it can't, but because it won't.

Don't look for a Love that won't break your heart. Look for a Love that is worth having your heart broken. Don't look for a Love that won't hurt. Look for a Love that holds you until it doesn't hurt anymore. Don't look for a Love that can't lose. Look for a Love that can't stop trying.

Don't look for a Love that is safe. Look for a Love that is dangerous beyond your wildest imagination.

And ask yourself: "If you aren't willing to fall, how can you ever fall in Love?"


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