[Rector]

Love requited

 

Unrequited love, the crushing rejection of offered love. In the dim dark recesses of our emotions there lie those few occasions when we reached out in love, only to have our fingers crushed. Most likely it was at school. Overcoming fear, we asked the class beauty or the handsome stud, if they would come with us to the school social. Their laughing reply would crush us for years to come. For many of us, we would never again easily venture from the safety of inactivity.

Damaged emotions are the lot of all of us. The sharpness of unrequited love is matched with that of unfulfilled love. No relationship can be fully consummated. We all of us have that corner of our emotions desiring release, but trapped within the limitations of our own psyche and that of those around us. We desire to know fully, but cannot. Our past, social conventions, our inability to say what we feel, all restrict us, inhibit us.

How often has a young daughter failed to know the affection of her father? We males often run a mile when our daughter, flushed with pubic glow, sits on our lap and tries to give us a big cuddle. Our rejection says that our daughter's emerging sexual-self is ugly. Rejection after rejection can destroy any sense of self-worth, let alone any confidence in the sensual touch. Such a girl may marry anyone but her lover. In the corner of her emotions there hides unfulfilled love.

So it is with all of us. Rejection, the circumstance of life, genetic inclinations, inhibitions..... all trap the gentle touch. So we are left with "Days of our Life" or Mills and Boone. We are left with fantasy, with dreams rather than reality. Of course, this corner of our psyche must stay hidden. We can never tell our partner that they do not fully satisfy us, that our love is unfulfilled. Only in a philosophical moment would we dare run the line that no one relationship can fully satisfy the complexity of the human psyche. So we play the game, maintain the distance, touch but don't touch.

The Apostle Paul said that there will come a day when we will know even as we are known. This knowing is not just cerebral. In the Bible a man "knows" his wife when he unites with her in marriage. Such "knowing" is emotional, cognitive, physical and even spiritual and such is God's "knowing" of us. It is a "oneness" with God, a "union" with him, and this through Jesus our gently Lord. In him we find God's gentle touch and are fulfilled, never rejected.