Tonight my son and I went to see the musical “Les Miserables.” It was wonderful to see and hear the music making while visiting New York. To say the show is amazing is an understatement. The man playing the role of Valjean, Ramin Karimloo, was breath-takingly wonderful. When he sang “Bring Him Home” I thought I was going to die. His singing was effortless and easy.
One of my favorite moments in the show occurs at the very end, when several of the lead characters sing the line, “To love another person is to see the face of God.” What an incredible statement. The act of loving is much stronger than just a feel good emotion. Our culture thrives on love being reduced to just an emotion. Don’t believe me? Watch a little reality television and I think you will get my point.
I immediately think of the writings of St. Paul when describing this thing we call love. According to the biblical text, “Love never fails” (I Cor. 13:8 NIV). This complete kind of active love puts us within the immediate presence of God. In this holy space, we are transformed into the very person that we are created to be. It is life altering and life giving. This is what it means to love in a way that glorifies God.
I had the opportunity to share a little time with my son. I believe in many ways this kind of great love was present as we witnessed an incredible performance by an amazing cast. The love about which I am talking showed its form as we took some time to share our passion for the theater and to connect with each other in a way that is reserve for our unique relationship; the roles of father and son.
Tonight I am grateful to have moments that remind me of what it means to love in a way that is life giving. Thanks be to God for our lives and the joys that come our way. This is what sustains us. This is what nurtures us.