Have you ever tried to define “love?” It’s not so easy, is it? Eventually you end up with a long elaborate list of rules, expectations and metaphors that still seem to wander off the path. Well, they don’t just wander, they end up wandering off, tripping, and falling over a precipice never hoping to reach their destination. Love, quite simply, is one of those things that defy words. You know what it means. If you try to intellectualize it, you end up with a confused mess. But sit silently with it and there’s no mistaking it. Love.
I’ve recently run across pictures that very humbly define “love.” These pictures are of men who are homeless, at least that’s what I infer from the pictures. They look cold and hopeless. How does their predicament show “love?” Just take a look.
These are men who have run across hard times. They have the clothes on their backs. They also have their dogs. Dogs and human beings snuggled close, giving each other warmth in the cold, but if you look more closely you can see something else. Besides body heat they are also sharing that wordless need we all have; to be wanted, to be needed, to give love and be loved in return. I see the food of hope in that essence between men and dogs. I see it fanning the dim spark of faith and keeping it tenuously alive; a “maybe” for tomorrow. I see safety and security of the soul even though it doesn’t exist for them materialistically. I see love in all it’s silent beauty.
It’s all the proof in the world you can’t buy love. These men have nothing to give these dogs that they can’t give themselves to survive, but they have their bond of love. In its simplicity nothing is being taken for granted. It sure gives you perspective.