Love is an interesting thing. It changes our outlook on a person, place, or circumstance. It can make people do funny things that they normally wouldn’t have done. It influences our actions, emotions, and beliefs.
Love literally changes the way our brain works – chemicals are released in the brain where love is present in someone’s life. Outlooks are brighter, colors more vibrant, experiences more pleasing.
People also “fall” in and out of it far too quickly. This idea that love is a feeling, or a passing fancy has and probably will be the prevalent notion for most people.
True love is a lot stronger than those passing fancies though. It withstands the test of time. High and low points, hardship and ease – real, honest love is strong and steadfast.
If your story is anything like mine, you have experienced brokenness and hardship. You’ve experienced broken love from broken people who have learned how to do life from other broken people. In the end, what are we? Broken people made to desire and need love but ultimately unable to truly give or get it.
You can’t give what you don’t have. If you’ve never seen or experienced the “never let you go, love all parts of you issues and all” love, how can you expect to give it? How can you expect to recognize it when it is given?
I find myself not trusting true love even when its staring me in the face. Surely, the other shoe is about to drop or the fine print I didn’t notice is going to come back to bite me.
What do you do when that doesn’t happen? When you actually just get to have the good gift, no questions asked, no pre-requisites. Just honestly given freely without a price.
No, I must have gotten that wrong, nothing is just given. Nothing comes without a price.
But it does. God does. We love because he first loved us.
We can experience true love because we can experience THE true love. Sure, human love can be glorious, but in the end we are flawed human beings, who have experienced broken examples and will come face to face with brokenness in another human at one point or another.
Experiencing brokenness over and over again causes one to build up protective walls around themselves. Getting hurt even one time, can affect how we see and perceive the world and people around us.
The thing about walls is that it not only keeps people out, it keeps God out. It’s not our job to protect ourselves, it’s God’s job. We can’t close ourselves off to risk simply because it might bring pain.
We determine how close we let God get to us.
It’s only when I let God love me do I start to experience the life that true love brings. It’s only when I let God’s love in do I start to truly know what it means to be wholly and completely loved.
John Legend sings it pretty darn well in his song All of Me:
“‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you
You’re my end and my beginning
Even when I lose I’m winning”
God sings that over us, to us. We are perfect to him, flaws and all.
I surely can’t give that kind of love 100% 24/7. Sometimes I have a hard time looking past someone’s issues. God doesn’t.
He lavishes his love on us. He longs to be close, to draw us close – we have to let him do that though. We have to stop letting past hurt and poor examples and misunderstandings get in the way of us experiencing that true, good, honest, healing love that our soul so desperately needs and craves.
It’s only when we experience and let in the love of God do we have the capability of giving it to others.
There is no possible way for us to love without knowing what love is first. There is no possible way to recognize the real deal if we have a faulty definition for what it looks like.
We can stop expecting the other shoe to drop. We can stop preparing for the worst. We can stop sabotaging ourselves because we are afraid of getting hurt.
You’re not perfect, nobody is – and you get to have good gifts. God has good gifts for you. Brokenness and heartache are not your cup forever. Bad things happening is not the only part of your story.
You’ve had chapters of hardship and brokenness and now its time for the good gifts God has for you. He has plans to prosper you. Plans for hope. Plans for your future, and they are good plans.
Those good gifts may even be staring you right in the face and you just don’t have the eyes to see it yet.
The goodness of God is not dependent on present circumstances or how much time has past or the amount of work that still needs to be done.
The goodness of God is dependent solely on God and his ability to accomplish his purposes.
A house is only as strong as it’s foundation, so let’s build our lives upon God’s love because that is only thing that will sustain us throughout all of life.
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to love a little more wholly than I did before. The kind of love that isn’t dependent on a bad day or bad circumstances – that is whole and complete. Given regardless of one’s feelings.
Unconditional love – you got it and it’s not going anywhere. Even when you mess up, that’s what the “un” part of unconditional means.