Anything supernatural I’ll have to preface by stating that I am by no means an expert, at the same time I like to describe myself as an imperfect practitioner but at least trying to arrive at a solution.
In one sense, one can describe love in two ways:
- Natural Love – love on a natural level, the kind of love a parent might have for a child or the kind among friends, getting value out of a relationship
- Divine Love – love on a supernatural level, the kind of love the Jesus has for each one of us, the kind of love of saints, loving those who have harmed you
Loving while suffering I would say is a bit supernatural, divine love. Divine love is love without a price tag – it is when you love without self-interest. Agape love. It seems true love is unfair as the initiator not only expects nothing in return, he is often left hanging, even suffering while the beloved may be ungrateful, disinterested, self-absorbed. This is often how we treat Jesus.
So how do we love while suffering? Consider a few points:
- Try to see things in the eyes of Jesus e.g.:
- Imagine Jesus asking you: “Do you love me enough to share my suffering with you?”
- Jesus understands your suffering, he consoles us when we let him. At least as a friend, we can accept the suffering as a gift to Jesus, keeping in mind the greater good of the human family
- Suffering in love in a sense is like a mother giving birth to a child; in the midst of the suffering we can’t always appreciate the meaning of this suffering until there is a birth of something good
- Some might think suffering is evil, but God allows evil for a greater good – that we may be virtuous yet even better – that we may love freely and more beautifully with deeper meaning and value
- Why can’t God just take away all the suffering? Why can’t he just give us everything like dropping manna from the sky? He could but he wants us to possess and share his inheritance like he does – from within himself
- How about we give, not just externally or when it is easy, but how about we give from within ourself, how about we love by giving from within?
- Consider some thoughts by C.S. Lewis, sometimes our hearts need to be broken, for our own good
- It can be a joy, not necessarily feeling happy, but some level of contentment as you can derive peace from participating in meaningful love