LOOKING FOR LOVE: HIDING VS SEEKING (Part 4 of 4)
Greetings and welcome to my post. The purpose of this post is to engage in conversation about how all of us do relationships. I believe that we are created for relationships and what gives us the most meaning in our lives is the significant relationships we have with people. When we have positive, growing, and happy relationships, then our lives become more meaningful. But the opposite can also happen when we have conflict, hate, and hurt in our most important relationships. Then life can become very stressful and depressing.
In this current post, I want to focus on what we are all looking for: Love. In 1987, “U2” penned these words in their song, “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for”
“I have climbed highest mountains; I have run through the fields, only to be with you. I have run, I have crawled, I have scaled these city walls, only to be with you. But I still haven’t found what I’m look for.”
The focus of this song is a man desperately looking for love, and he is stating in his plea how much he has tried to find love but still hasn’t found what he’s looking for. He is desperate but ends up unsatisfied.
Today, we can claim the desperation and longing we all want: To love and be loved. When you are loved, you feel connected and plugged in. You feel and know that someone loves you, likes you, and desires to be with you. Someone has chosen you, enjoys you and when you feel their love, you feel very satisfied and fulfilled. Your love tank is full.
The question that needs to be asked is this: Are you a seeker? If I were to ask three of your friends to describe you, would one of your character traits be that you are a seeker? Do you take the initiative and become proactive in your life. Do you find the motivation to seek and pursue certain things and areas of your life? Do you see value in being a person who seeks?
For example, let’s say you are invited to attend a dessert party and you decide to bring a plate of cookies. You plan to cook these cookies all day but various interruptions happen that day and you try to find an hour to make your favorite recipe. But this does not happen and you end up rushing to the party and picking up cookies at the grocery store. Ideally, you wanted to cook but the reality is that you could not. But then someone at the party walks up to you and thanks you for bringing these store cookies as they are her favorite cookies. Would you accept this compliment and forgive yourself that you did not bake cookies? Can you see how their compliment can relieve you of beating yourself up for not being perfect and baking your own cookies? Can you forgive yourself and accept yourself for not being perfect and receive someone else’s forgiveness? Seeking love means seeking forgiveness.
Or let’s say your boss comes up to you and states that they believe you could be really good as an account manager. They believe you would do really well in the cooperate office and you would be a good candidate to head up some new accounting software that the company is wanting to employ. Do you take the initiative, step up and take authority over your life and your skills as an accountant by not being frightened of people being jealous of you doing this? If you are going to be a leader and take authority, others may shoot you down and criticize you. But can you seek and be aggressive and take ownership of your accounting skills as your manager believe in you. Can you seek love and authority over your life by participating in what God has created you to do?
The challenge to come out of hiding and seek and find love in the four areas of need I have mentioned throughout this post, is to remember that the solution to hiding is not ripping away our self-protective defenses, but to make our hiding styles unnecessary. We accomplish that goal by meeting the need that the hiding or defense is protecting. The more we repair ourselves throughout life, the less hiding we will all need.
So the key is this: By inviting you to do things in which you don’t feel you can do on your on, is similar to ripping a child’s security blanket away from him before the child is ready to give it up. The child will panic, and frantically search for his comforting possession. But if the child gets what he needs over time and is actively involved in his own maturing process, the day will come when the child forgets the blanket. He’s just too involved with playing with his friends now.
Just as the blanket and our hiding styles serve a purpose for a season, we can relinquish and let go of our defenses in our own timely fashion. By then, we are so involved in meeting our needs and allowing others to meet our need, we are ready to mature and let go and come out from hiding.
My hope and prayer is we will all find the process of seeking love and not hiding from love as our strategy for life, by pursuing what we all are looking for: Love. Seek love, overcome your hiding styles, receive what you need, and your life will become much more fulfilled. Seek love and be loved. I promise you, your life will be better.
Phil Kiehl, LMFT, M.Div.
P.S. I’d love to hear your thoughts about this subject. Share your comments and share this article with others. Thanks.