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During a celebration of Stevie Wonder’s life, he was given the opportunity to speak. After expressing several thoughts about race and the need for people to work together in love and peace, he said, “It feels better to love than to hate.” His words resonated with me for I believe no truer statement could have been spoken that night.

When we are able to express love through affection, gifts of gratitude and kindness, the desire to hate in any relationship vanishes. It takes two individuals working together toward a common goal with both willing to give and forgive to have a sustaining relationship. It’s a two-way street and love and hate cannot possibly share the same space at the same time.

If your desire is to have a loving relationship, then it’s important to show your loved one how you feel in ways that they will understand and appreciate. With a little extra work, you will be able to express your love and keep your relationship going strong.

On this note, I have a few suggestions to help keep a loving relationship healthy between two people.

  1. Some people are more comfortable writing out their feelings than saying them out loud. If you have difficulty expressing your feelings, write them on a card for your partner to read.
  2. Make sure that the card expresses your true feelings and not someone else’s words found on a card in the store. It should express what you are thinking and how much you care.
  3. Recognize that some people prefer more affection than others. Talk with your partner about what is appropriate. I have two daughters. One daughter will walk with me holding hands but with the other daughter, I dare not hold her hand in public. However, I know that both daughters love me.
  4. You don’t always have to make date nights romantic. Kick up your heels and have a little crazy fun! Do something together that is goofy or choose an activity that you can laugh about and enjoy, like bowling.
  5. Men don’t always go home empty handed. Take a gift that expresses your gratitude, such as flowers, etc.
  6. Sometimes volunteer to help with the cooking and cleaning. You just might learn that cooking together can be a romantic adventure. The point is, doing something special together will keep the fire burning in a relationship.
  7. A sustaining relationship has two primary ingredients: an expression of sharing and an expression of forgiveness.

Yes, “it feels better to love than hate.” All of us would much rather have a loving relationship than one that is dreadful. So, today it’s time to start your positive feelings by saying, “I love you.” With this expression, both can share in happy times.

Never Give Up! Never Give Up! Never Give Up!

By Chaplain Ghosten

chaplain@lhp.net