Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Love Like You Mean It

Love. Such a loaded word. In today's culture, we "love" so many things that I think the word has lost some of it's value. I remember as a school-aged kid writing I :heart: ____ (insert boys name) on my hand in colorful gel pen. That certainly wasn't love, the name changed regularly, but I was being fooled by the world at an early age about love.

The phrase "I love you" is something my husband says to me several times each day. And he sincerely means it! I remember the first time Tyler said those three words. We were indulging on cheesecake under the stars when he turned to me and expressed that he loved me. My response: "Are you sure?" Poor guy. He was sure! And as we're now into our second year of marriage, he continues to pursue, woo, and love me.

The Bible tells me in several places that I am loved by the Lord: "The LORD your God...will quiet you by his love." - Zephaniah 3:17, "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you." - John 15:9, "...the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." - Galatians 2:20, "We love because he first loved us." - 1 John 4:19 and in so many other passages! I first heard about the love of God when I was a five year old girl. My neighbor, who was six or seven years old at the time, told me that if I asked Jesus to live in my heart that I would live forever. It is because of God's unending love that he desires us to be with Him in perfect relationship, for all eternity!

Last night I had an exciting and emotional "ah-ha!" moment. Before last night, I could have written the above text and meant every single word. But after last night, those words have both meaning and depth. It hit me that I am passionately loved by both my God and my husband-- in spite of my imperfections, both inside and out. What an overwhelming thing to have hit you at once! I was crying uncontrollably; one because I have been married for almost a year and a half and just now am realizing that my husband actually loves me the way he says he does --no matter what I look like or how crazy I can be-- and two because even though my heart is full of sin and my body is wasting away, God loves me! "And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." - Philippians 1:6 The Lord knows I am still imperfect, but with patience, He grows me all the while, loving me. Man oh man! What a blessed lil lady I am!!

There are not words to describe just how grateful I am that my husband's love teaches me about the Lord's love.

"Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her."
 - Ephesians 5:25

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