In my four years of online dating (oh wow), I've had plenty of ups and downs.
You don’t have to like what they do but you do have to love them.” But what does that mean exactly? Can we say and do whatever we want in relation to a person so long as we pay lip service to some sort of wishy-washy love?
There is a tendency to excuse cruel or angry words by boasting of our honesty. Conversely, many withhold love by focusing on the bad. Yet our job, if we are called to love our neighbor, is to look for the loveable.
“You don’t have to like everyone but you have to love everyone”: A simple way of explaining the second great commandment to our children. If there is no truth except some nebulous idea of tolerance then the only way to express love is to be a “yes man.” Another common mistake is perhaps a natural reaction to this frustrating trend.
Or must we love our neighbor by supporting every single decision they make and characteristic they possess? In a world of relativism, it is common to mistake love for blind agreement.
(“No offense but…” or “I’m just telling it like it is.”) Yes, St. God knows Himself and in knowing loves Himself for He is Good. If you can’t love my bad temper or my cruel sense of humor then you don’t deserve me! We don’t deserve it.) Others feel that failure to support every action of every person is failure to love. Well I could love this person if only they hadn’t hurt me in x way. How many of our broken relationships could we fix in this way!
Paul teaches us to correct our brethren, but the attitude so often is not one of love but of scorn. When God created the world and mankind through his love He “saw that it was good.” We are all made in His image and likeness. Do we have political enemies we cannot communicate with because we only see errors? Wrong opinions are often held for understandable reasons, like a mistaken idea of charity.
Today she should have said “No, they are really horrible and treat me disgracefully.” A true statement.
Or “Well they have a really tragic backstory and they do what’s right for them. Instead Cinderella answers with true charity which sees flaws for what they are, but loves the intrinsically good person behind them.
Compared to the relatively snail-like pace of meeting someone IRL, getting to know them, becoming friends, and then maybe going on a date, the way things work online is crazy-fast.
Here's a breakdown of how things might typically go in a given three-hour period I spend on a dating app: I learn someone exists, make small talk, ask a few personal get-to-know-you questions, flirt (with varying levels of subtlety), exchange numbers, and ask him out.
Goodness is naturally loveable and everything and everyone God created is good if we have the eyes to see it.