Virtues are good habits of character. No one’s come up with a better way to be happy than to discover how to practice Justice, Courage, Self-Control, Prudence, Faith, Hope, and Love. They are the seven main virtues. They give us more peace inside and out.
In this seven-week series, we dig into a different virtue every week. Welcome to Week Seven: Love.
Love is the final virtue of the seven. It’s the biggest. It’s the baddest. It contains and gives meaning to all the others. Love is the reason, the glue, the summit, the everything. Love is for grownups.
I’m not talking about “Truly Madly Deeply”—I’m talking about the “total idiot” who gets the promotion you were expecting. Or a friend who blabs something that was supposed to be confidential. Get this: “Stated baldly, love certainly means one of two things—pardoning unpardonable acts, or loving unlovable people.” G. K. Chesterton said that.
We are attracted to love although it is beyond reason. We are attracted because we know it’s true and we love receiving it. Especially when we do the unpardonable and behave as the unlovable. Love—looking to the eternal in the present painful—is the only thing that can make things okay, now. Only love can bring peace of soul, now. Only love lasts forever.
If anger or stubbornness prevent us from loving the unlovable, we can step away and let God love them for us. That’s what He’s here for. There are two steps to doing that. Step 1: Wish the best for the object of your ire—desire the same blessings for them that you desire for yourself. Step 2: Pray for him or her. That puts the ball in God’s court, where it belongs.
And I try to always remember the late Joan Rivers’ great advice: “Oh, grow up!”