Forever and always the answer is Love

Karen Olson Johnson
Published on: February 2013
For most of us, our day-to-day lives lack this word - the word "love". We do not say "I love you" to the person whom we just met for a brief moment in the elevator, to the young lady who served us lunch, to our particularly crabby boss at work, or to the person on the other end of a phone call. We do not speak the words "I love you" to these people. Oh, we never could say this to strangers, let alone our boss. But during the course of our very busy lives, we meet so many people and interact on so many different levels. We get Opportunity after opportunity to express our feelings with every passing minute of every day. How are we to respond? How are we to be in this world? What is our collective call, our collective mission?
forever and always answer is love,opportunity
So last month, I tried an experiment. With every, and I mean every, interaction either on the phone, in email, in person, in committee meetings, even over the radio, I asked the person I was in connection with, "How are you doing?" Sometimes this communication was verbal; I actually asked the question. Sometimes I whispered it under my breath as they spoke to me about something totally unrelated. Often I thought about it and sent it to them as a sort of a silent query. And, with those not in my presence, it came in the form of a prayer with a surrounding of positive energy.

Last week, I phoned the city water office to inquire about our billing statement. I thought the numbers for usage looked normal, but the charges were higher than expected. When the service representative finally picked up our call after a long wait, she obviously lacked energy, felt hurried and pressured. I inquired how her day was going. Surprisingly, she told me that her daughter was home today, very sick, and she was worried. Her daughter had not called to indicate if she was better. The representative had her cell phone available to receive her daughter's call. Just as she spoke this concern, her phone started to vibrate. She asked me if she could take the call. I said I would wait for her return to our call. When she came back to our business, I could feel her relief right through the phone lines. She shared a bit about her daughter and then promptly took care of my concern. I thanked her and then she thanked me for my concern. She also thanked me for waiting while she relayed, dare I say, love to her daughter.
In every encounter I have, the answer is so very clear. It is gratitude. Thank you for thinking and caring enough to ask how I feel. I could palpably sense the difference in the response levels of those to whom I connected by simply putting myself in the position of truly wanting to know about them and what was happening in their lives, in their thoughts, and in their hearts. I felt our connections rise to another level and another dimension. Could that dimension be the one we all crave? Is this the dimension of love?

The mundane madness of a day-to-day existence - devoid of any real connection with each other has been debated for decades as the source of many of society's current dilemmas. The answer is within us, and how we are with each other. Forever and always, the answer is love.
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