John 3:16, Ephesians 3, 1 John 4:18
Love is a striking word.
It is a powerful word.
It is a word that tends to have a certain effect on people.
Love brings dryness to tear-filled eyes, laughter to broken spirits, and life to the deadest of hearts.
Love plants itself in the heart of the prince, and provokes him to rescue the princess.
Love brings joy and positivity.
But love can also be a scary word.
Love requires commitment.
Love requires sacrifice.
Love requires perseverance and selflessness.
See, I have this friend who has spent the last month discovering just how scared she is of the word “love” and all that comes with it.
She has spent the last month with a heart in turmoil at the hands of this word whose nature is meant to be peace. The thought of love brings a tightness to her chest that reminds her of uncertainty, indecision, and confusion.
I asked my friend if I could share her story with you.
This friend…she has fallen out of love. Over time, a relationship she once had confidence in has become a source of worry and hesitation. She has looked at it from every angle, picking apart the details and trying to place them back together in a way that would reignite emotions and heal wounds. She could point out specific things that went wrong. She could point out people who came along and forced her to reevaluate. She could point out mistakes she made. She could place blame in one hundred different places, when in all actuality, it could be boiled down to one simple explanation.
The love she had fallen in was not perfect.
Yeah, I know you’re thinking it. The person she fell in love with wasn’t perfect either. That’s right—and the person your heart falls for won’t be. And the love you fall into won’t be perfect either. It won’t come without difficulties, sacrifices, or heartbreaks. But that’s the point.
We as humans are made to fall into imperfect love, because we are imperfect.
But here’s the catch. Despite our imperfections, we are made to fall in love with a perfect Savior.
We are made to pursue and be pursued by a love so pure that nothing and no one can taint it. A love beyond what anyone we come in contact with in this earthly life can show us. A love so proven, rich, and full that it has the power to alter eternities (John 3:16). A love that roots itself in our hearts and fits into every intricate detail of our lives (Ephesians 3:16-18). A love that surpasses our knowledge and cannot be explained (Ephesians 3:19).
For my friend, this love has been a safe haven. This love has been the only place to run to while she has prodded through the messy details of her less than perfect love. But what she has discovered is that even greater than the love is the Giver of it. And the beautiful reality is that we can run to Him with the messes of our lives, and He looks to us and tells us that our mess is no match for Him. That our heartbreaks are what He longs to mend and our weakness is where His power is all the more displayed.
So maybe you’re like my friend.
Stuck in a situation full of less than perfect love. Let’s face it…you have either been there or will be there one day.
Hurt. Confused. Broken. Tired. Scared.
Maybe it’s time to run toward a perfect love.
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear…”(1 John 4:18a)