Tuesday, July 12, 2011

No Better Love

Not long ago, I found myself questioning God about my place in the world, as well as my place in various relationships.  "Am I where I'm meant to be?" was only one of the many questions I asked with genuine uncertainty.  His answer has been absolutely transforming, both emotionally and spiritually, as well as circumstantially.  While I actively participate in the changes now occurring within my life, I wonder why He used what He did to bring me to where He has, though as I continue to wonder, I accept that I may never know.  Ultimately, His methods are of little consequence as long as I recognize His ever present hand of love within each of my days and my life's outcome.  It is this love that finally brought me to my knees in grateful appreciation over both the good and bad in my life, those times that have already been and those that are yet to come.  I'm finally getting it.  

So often when we fall in love, we expect the other person to do for us what they can't possibly do, and they're instantly set up to deliver both failure and disappointment.  Why do we do this?   As I listened to the Third Day song above a few days ago, I realized that I want the mountain top to be climbed and the ocean swam. I want to be the everything to him who loves me, and be it enough to be found on the mountain's other side and the oceans other beach.  "Can't I have that?" I tearfully asked God.  I want the sun and moon moved if that's what it takes to be with me, yet as Third Day's artists sing, it can never be done.  So, is it wrong for me to want this?  No, it's not wrong for anyone to want this kind of undying and selfless love, but it's wrong to think that it can ever be offered by man alone.  The very thing I asked of God, I already had.  This kind of love is found only in Him, and it's because He has already done it that we have a desire within us to experience it.  So, why do we do this thing of hoping and looking for love that climbs mountains and swims oceans? We long for it because He placed the expectation of it within us so that when we search, He will be our discovery.

I started thinking about this and realized how blessed I really am.  Not only do I have the indescribable love of God living within me, but He also gave me someone who truly would go to the ends of the earth for me if He could.  Out of the entire world, God handpicked a man who was willing to give up everything just to be with me.  When Sam and I met, he had almost everything he could possibly want, and though I've never shared the details of our story, it begins with him choosing to walk away from all that he knew to start a life with yours truly.  How utterly thoughtful and amazing of God to give me someone who loves me so fully and completely. Until recently, I never caught the parallels between God's love and that of my husband's, but I get it now and see my spouse for the true gift that he is.  As I reflect upon the things that have been done for me, not just by Jesus, but also by the man I call husband, I now wonder - how could I ever ask or want for more? One love died for me, and the other gave up everything just to be with me.  It's impossible to find another love like God's, and rare to find one like my husband's.  How slow I've been to realize the gifts and blessing right before me.   

When you find yourself wanting a love that lasts and will go to any lengths to be with you, don't look into the eyes of other people; look into the heart of God.  Even if I didn't have Sam, I'll always have the one love that truly matters the most.  There's a story about a man who chose to save a train full of people at the expense of his own child's life, an account quite similar to that of what God did for us (see link below for story details).  I don't think I could have been that selfless, and I'm grateful that I've not been asked to be. However, I can't help but picture God's broken heart as He saved us while Jesus died on the cross.  How could any of us ever wonder what love is if we fully realize what has already been done?  How could we ever want for more when what was done was more than enough?  How could I ever ask that someone swim the ocean to be with me when Jesus already did so much more?  You may not be with the one you love today, and you may not know who God will choose for you, but in the meantime rest securely in the knowledge of what He has already done - all in the name of just being with you and loving you.

So frequently, I've taken His love for granted but when I was at my worst, He was there reminding me that He would go to any lengths to be with me, regardless of what I've done or will do.  As I cried not too long ago over my own broken heart, poorly made decisions, and seemingly insurmountable guilt over mistakes made, He showed up and reassured me that He would die for me all over again out of pure love just for me.    That is a love worth living for, fighting for, and dying for.  As I realized that I don't need the oceans and mountains away love, I wondered how I've ever found it possible to be ungrateful for what I've been given?  If you are experiencing pain from something today, don't believe that the pain is the last thing you'll feel, because it's only the dark before the light.  Imagine sending the person you love the most in the world to die for the salvation of someone else.  You wouldn't probably do it, nor would I, but it's what God did for you when He sent His only son to die on a cross - your face and mine was in His mind.  That isn't a love that leaves you in pain, it's a love that heals, so start looking for your heart to again be made whole.  Don't be surprised when love's instruments fail you, but turn to the One love Who never fails; there is absolutely no better love than His, and just wait - you may be surprised by who he sends your way.      

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 John 4:9-10).

 Image taken from    www.handofgod.com.au

YouTube video from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Vp5bmX20pI

A father's unfathomable decision: http://www.godvine.com/A-Father-Faces-an-Unfathomable-Decision-Powerful-550.html

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