Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Out of Control

Every Monday night I lead a men's group of guys who are around my age who attend my church. (Church@Hoboken. Sorry for the plug, but this church is something that I am VERY proud of.) Dinner Group as we call it has been one of the best experience of my life. I always look forward to each week. The conversations you can have around a freshly grilled meal in plastic chairs on a balcony in Hoboken is just an overwhelmingly amazing experience. Its weird to say this but I honestly think that Monday is my favorite day of the week solely because its the day I get to know, learn, grown, and serve with some of the most respectable men I have ever met. The most comforting thing about the group is just knowing that you have 10 other guys who honestly care.

Any who, the reason I bring them up is because one of the guys in the group made the statement before group started on Monday that, "death is the only thing in life that we cant control." While I'm not going to make the argument that death is in our control, I disagree that its the only thing that we do not have control of. Although this is all assuming that we are all on the same page that there are things in this life we don't have control of, and to me that is because of a higher being. (But debating that can last forever, and if you would like to have that conversation get a hold of me and we'll work out a better forum to discuss that.)

Perhaps I am jaded but I really don't think love is something that we can control. I am not so sure that who we love is really in our control and I am sure we all know that we can't control who loves us back. If love was truly in our control would we still "fall in love?"

Like death, love is something that finds us. Sure we can choose eat healthy, exercise and other things to help avoid death, but its still not in our control when a drunk driver crosses the center line. With love, we can make choices to help love find us, or purse us, such as the way we dress and behave. (Take note that I mean this in the the sense of love and not lust we are trying to find.)

If love was something thing that we can control then we would find it a truth that we could force ourselves to love anyone else. I don't know about you by there is no comfort in someone who is forced or is forcing themselves to love you.

I know some people will be turned away when I bring Him into this but hang with me. When Jesus was asked what is the greatest commandment in all of Law he replied that the second greatest was, "Love your neighbor as yourself." (Mark 12:31) The problem is that when people try to love our neighbor as ourselves, they then try to hard to force that love. I do not believe that genuine love is something that can truly occur without building a relationship with that neighbor. It can also be said that a lot of the time people try to control the situations in which they love our neighbors, and again how real is the love when one person is controlling the environment?

Maybe this is where a lot of relationships problems are created. Sometimes we send so much of of our time forcing ourselves to love someone, controlling the situation, or even trying to convince them to love you back. When in the end, really its just out of our control to begin with.

After writing all of this, the only thing about love that I am confident is that "Love is not something that is in our control."

I think there are more things out their such as joy, perhaps peace too?....but I'll save that for another post.

How do you feel about the subject? Is love something you feel like you can control? Is there something besides love that you feel is out of the control of peoples hands? Or do you feel like everything is in your control?

... if so I think we'd all enjoy hearing your thought, you can use the comment section below to share your opinion or a link to your site with your response.


  1. I disagree with you Nick. That is a provocative way to start my comment!
    I think we might not be able to control who we fall in love with but that is a different thing to loving someone.
    If we say we are unable to control who we love then to me that says it is fine to leave/divorce someone when you fall out of love with them. Romantic love is different to love that lasts for years or love between friends.

  2. I believe love is a choice. If it's our choice does it not mean we have control over it?

    Interesting...i shall ponder about this.