January 23rd, 2009

And I Love Her

Song Info (from Beatlesongs):”And I Love Her” is on the A Hard Day’s Night album and was 65% written by McCartney and 35% by Lennon. By 1972 there were 372 cover versions of it. In 1984, Paul said, “…it was a nice tune, that one. I still like it.”

Growing up in church, I heard often about the word “love,” particularly as it was used in the Bible. There were three main Greek words translated “love” in the New Testament: eros, philos, and agape. The first refers to a romantic or sexual love (the word “erotic” is derived from this), the second to a friendly or brotherly love (“Philadelphia” comes from this), and the last, agape, refers to an unconditional love, a giving love, a sacrificial love.

This last one is the most difficult one. We like to do things that are easy for us and serve our needs. Agape, though, requires us to give and serve and meet the needs of someone else, regardless of how difficult that can be at times. It can be hard enough when everything’s normal, but when the other party has hurt you or ignored you or damaged your trust, well, it gets very, very difficult. It’s only natural to want to protect oneself from hurt, whether that be physical or mental.

The reason this topic is on my mind lately is… well… I’ve been in a relationship with someone difficult for quite some time now. She’s mean to me and my friends, she has total disregard for my wishes, she expects to be waited on at all times, her breath is terrible… and sometimes she hisses at and bites people.

Some of you have met Nutmeg, so you know what I’m talking about. Nobody likes her. …except me. I don’t know why, but I do love the little monster. Part of it’s probably because I’m the only person she likes, I’m sure – when I’m the only one here, whatever room I’m in, she’s there. Another part is that I know I’m all she has. If I didn’t love her and keep her, no one else would take her.

She does purr and cuddle, so I guess it’s not completely selfless of me, but I think for the most part that I love her more than she “deserves.” And isn’t that kind of the point, though? Most of us have done rotten things and don’t really deserve love, so it’s all the more special when someone does choose to love us.

April 23rd, 2007

luv is a verb

I realize I’m about 15 years late in making the following statement, but… I like dc Talk.

Expected responses to that statement include “Who?”, “Oh my word,” and eye rolls a-plenty. There will also be a few horrified looks and at least one or two bemused shakings of the head.

See, dc Talk was a Christian rap group. Near as I can tell, they had their heyday in the 90s, a time when I would have fallen into either the “horrified” or “bemused” reactions myself, depending on who was telling me about them. The words “Christian” and “rap” don’t belong together, right? I’m not going to get into a whole debate on that topic, as there’s no way to answer it satisfactorily for people on either side of the debate (so please don’t focus on this aspect of it in the comments!). Those who’ve been reading for a long time, though, will know I have an affinity for certain types of rap, and there have been a few people here and there who’ve seen me “perform” such things as “White & Nerdy,” “All About the Pentiums,” “Vice,” and “Nightmare on My Street.” I don’t get into “gangsta” even a little, and have no interest in cuss- and deragatory word-filled music.

But I’m getting off-topic. My point is that I’ve picked up a couple of dc Talk albums recently and have been enjoying them. In fact, the ringtone for my “Church people” caller group is the opening bars to “Jesus Freak,” which, incidentally, makes me giggle.

This weekend I found a used copy of “Free At Last,” their third album. And while titles like “word 2 the Father” and “Jesus is just alright” activate my Skeptic’s Eyebrow, I still find some good stuff here and there. For instance:

Pullin out my big black book
Cause when I need a word defined thats where I look
So I move to the L’s quick, fast, in a hurry
Threw on my specs, thought my vision was blurry
I looked again but to my dismay
It was black and white with no room for grey
Ya see, a big V stood beyond my word
And yo thats when it hit me, that luv is a verb

Say what you want about “Christian hip-hop,” but this is an important for anyone to remember, church-goer or not: “love” isn’t just a verb, it’s an action verb. If I love you (as a friend, family member, or whatever else), I’ll show you that I love you, I won’t just say it. That’s not just me doing things for you, that’s me reacting correctly to you, me wanting the best things for you across the board, and me making things less about “me” and more about you.

I’ve been back at church for a few months now after being “away” for a few years, and I’m finding that my perspective’s changed. I have the privilege of attending a church that stresses “real world Christianity,” and I’m learning that it’s what I do, not what I don’t do that makes the difference. And the thing that I need to do the most is love others.

Jesus said it this way: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” (John 13:34, NIV)

dc Talk says it this way:

Back in the day there was a Man
Who stepped out of heaven and He walked the land
He delivered to the people an eternal choice
With a heart full of luv and the truth in His voice
Gave up His life so that we may live
How much more luv could the Son of God give?
Here is the example that we oughtta be matchin
Cause luv is a word that requires some action

There’s pretty much only one response I can have to that:


November 16th, 2006

Yoko? O, No.

Like most Beatles fans, I don’t have too many nice things to say about Yoko Ono. She broke up the band, man. Not cool. Very not cool. And she’s weird. Like, super-weird.

Recently, though, well…

Recently I’ve been listening to the soundtrack for the movie Rushmore. One of the songs on it is “Oh, Yoko” sung by John Lennon. He sings “In the middle of the night I call your name” and “in the middle of a shave” and other mundane times in a person’s normal day. She’s on his mind all the time. And it hit me – they were in love. No matter how weird they were or how “arty” or how whatever they were, they were in love.

John met her at a showing of her “work.” There was a ladder and John climbed it. On the ceiling above the ladder on a small card and in small type, there was a single word: “yes.” It intrigued him, and the ballad of John and Yoko spun out from there.

You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who wouldn’t say John and Yoko were perfect for each other. Two more strange people you won’t find anywhere. But that hasn’t stopped 30+ years of Beatles fans being mad at her, including me.

But I think I finally get it. No matter how much it changed his life or the lives around him, he was in love. I can respect that. I think I can almost forgive him, even.

Yoko’s still a wacko, though.