Over the course of the past two and half weeks, a few truths have come to my aid. I feel compelled to share them – because I and others cannot navigate grief alone. And if I do not share what is stuck on my heart, I feel as if I might be trapped within sorrow forever.
All photos by Payge Stevens Photography
Today, people have this massively, incredibly warped idea of love. Young girls, women and men alike constantly search for that one person who will eradicate all the bad, spoiled experiences they’ve had and show them what true love feels like. For goodness’ sake look at all the movies out today. Listen to the radio. Open a book. You are, without a doubt, going to find someone blindly grasping at these feeble illustrations of love. Now…. Ask yourself. What is the problem? The root of the problem?
It lies in that this kind of love cannot be found within another person. It cannot be found by dating, meditating, eat/pray/loving, or whichever method. It’s found in God. Simple as that.
I could end this post here. Not another word needs to be spoken or typed on the subject. But most people aren’t satisfied with just “God” as the answer. They leave the worship service, the church camp and a few days later feel exactly as they did before. So I won’t end there. Go beyond just realizing God is the answer. Look at the pedestals in your life. Who are you raising to a position above where they are meant to be? As tough as it is, you have to cut those ropes and let the idols fall. If you want to experience LOVE as it IS meant to be experienced, you have to emotionally, mentally, spiritually, maybe even physically take down those distractions.
Replacing those things with God can be the hardest part. But by grace, we don’t have to do it perfectly. We don’t even have to be consistent. Baby steps. Even for a SPLIT second if you idolize God for who He is, without anything in the way (career-wise, boyfriend-wise, husband-wise, family-wise, children-wise, pick a noun and stick it in there) you will feel an outpouring of something so indescribable no language has words to describe it. The fact is, what you’re feeling is supernatural. This love is not a noun, it’s not a state of being, it’s not anything like that. It IS. That’s it. We exist in a realm of time so for us, it is and it was and it always will be. But God is the great I am. God is Love. Love is. Remember that cute comic in the newspaper? “Love is…” Each week was a one-act illustration of what love was to the author. But when you realize you have your main priority right, by the grace of God, we realize love needs no embellishment. IT JUST IS.
If you’re like me. John 3:16 wasn’t necessarily the jaw-dropping verse most people made it out to be. It was stale after the countless sermons and lessons taught on it. It lost its fire for me. Just that verse everyone quotes for the yearbook because they know they should. But recently, I’ve begun to see it in a newfound light. Instead of diving deep into the diction and syntax and etc., just take it for face value. “For God so loved,” focus on THAT if nothing else. Remove the grammatical tense that makes sense within our realm of time. God is beyond that. “For God so loves,” is continual. It’s neverending. It’s eternal – just like the life you gain from Jesus’ death. From his love and death on the cross which was painful beyond measure we find that the love between us and God can be painless and free. It IS painless and free. No law, doctrine, circumstance, person, country, can separate you from that love. An entirely different story is when we elevate someone else in our life to this perfect love. We get let down because we expect these people to love us as God does. But they can’t. No one can, not even you no matter how hard you try. I won’t diverge there. That kind of misguided heartbreak deserves its own 1000 words. Just be aware that you’re keeping God where he belongs. And I mean that in your own life. Cause God is where he belongs regardless of your decisions. But he WANTS you to choose Him. Trust me.
I don’t know how to explain it any better than that. I’m not the best writer or communicator. More gets lost in translation from my brain to my mouth than what actually comes out right. I don’t use commas in the right places and overuse in other places. I switch tenses and have a few misplaced prepositional phrases. But I can’t sit by a moment longer and watch people mope about cause they can’t find the right person. Of course you cant! Stop looking for that person. What you are craving is all-consuming love. Love that cannot be gleaned from your romantic relationships, sexual relationships, children, work, etc. When you stop trying to replace God, whether you’re doing it on purpose or not, you will find exactly what you need.
Now, if you’re not a Christian or didn’t grow up with God. I’ll admit this probably isn’t the best. But I’m writing from my own experiences, hoping to reach someone. Because I know, someone needs to read this. And the same circumstances that led me to write this, will lead them to read this. Whether it be one person or many.