the power of transformative love
If I can stop one heart
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.
- Emily Dickinson
We sometimes overlook the transformative power of love.
I'm not talking about the everyday platitudes and niceties sprinkled into our conversations in an effort to placate and appease.
I'm talking about the type of love that has the ability to deeply connect two souls.
The most profound example of this came from a story I heard this summer.
A man called a Suicide Hotline and stated that he planned to take his own life that night, but before doing so, he wanted to talk to someone. He insisted, however, that whoever he talked to must NOT make any attempts to change his mind and that if they did, he would hang up the phone and proceed with his plan.
The man who took the call that night assured the caller that he would indeed respect his wishes.
The two began to converse; each taking turns as they talked and then listened.
By all accounts, it seemed like a normal conversation between two individuals.
When the man at the hotline center finally hung up the phone, his colleagues asked after the welfare of the caller.
The man replied that the caller had assured him that he was feeling much better and realized that he no longer wanted to take his own life.
When asked what he'd done to create this turnaround, the man replied,
"I simply loved him."
What this story demonstrates is the truly transformative power of love - free from need or expectation or judgment.
Coming from a place of pure love, one human soul was able to reach another human soul who was suffering, so that they, in turn, were able to reconnect with their own humanity and love for life itself.
It was the feeling that was conveyed on the phone that night, far more than the words.
That...right there...is the power of love.
And it lives within each of us.
It is ours to give freely,
Make it count.