Avalon Chronicles #43: "Love Story"
by Allen B. Clark firstname.lastname@example.org
In 1970 I was graduating SMU in Dallas with an MBA in finance. I was struggling mightily with healing and recovery from the trauma of the combat operating stressors (later termed Post Traumatic Stress) of my wounds in Vietnam three years earlier when my legs were amputated below the knee. Our nation was still mired in the quicksand of our war in Southeast Asia.
It is extremely interesting, even amidst times in our history, when a certain very limited part of our population is off doing the bidding of the captains and the kings in faraway battlefields, how life continues on unchanged on the homefront, never touching most anyone unless, as it was in Vietnam, they view the body bags on the evening news. In 1970 a many times-recalled by me movie premiered. It was "Love Story," starring Ryan O'Neal as Oliver, a wealthy Harvard student, and Ali McGraw as Jennifer, a working class Radcliffe student. One third of my Phillips Exeter Academy prep school class attended Harvard so it has always held a certain degree of fascination for me especially at that time in 2003 when I sat in Harvard Yard upon the graduation of my daughter Elizabeth from the Harvard Business school with her own MBA.
One line in the movie is all the script I recall, "Love means never having to say you are sorry," spoken by Jennifer to Oliver, apologizing for his anger, and again by Oliver to his father, who expressed his sorrow when Jennifer died. For some odd and unfathomable reason that line has remained in my memory and been recalled time and time again through the past four plus decades later. In the world of supposed civility and assumption of repentance, reflecting being sorry and regretful to mend broken personal fences is not utilized nearly enough as it should be to extend our humility and true emotional state of regret.
However, I have always recalled it in its applicability in the spiritual realm. If we truly are a person who believes in a Supreme Being, our Lord God, and desire to follow Him in accordance with I John 3:22 (KJV), "And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight," then we are constantly needful of saying, "I am sorry." We are all constantly in disobedience of God because we do not follow this scripture. If we love God, we strive to obey and please Him, and when we do not, and come to Him in confession to right ourselves, we are continually in a state of saying, "I am sorry." Obviously, in both a worldly and spitritual sense, if we truly love someone or something and especially our God, then we must be constantly cognizant of not doing those things that require having to say, "I am sorry," Ponder that. Love others, ourselves, and God in such a magnificent and lofty manner that we need never have to say, "I am sorry."