Writer, blogger and Family Advocate, Trisha Goyer recently wrote from the title “A Love Story Of My Own” on her blog. She gave an account of her journey to meeting, walking away from and reconnecting to God. She then invited her readers to share their love story.
I pondered over how to put into words the dynamic of my own love story. What I concluded was this:
“I grew up being afraid of God – even resenting him. In my church, it seemed that God was used as a scare tactic. I never really went to Sunday school so, my young mind had to decipher the message that was geared towards adults. I learned what the word wrath meant. But love was another story. I am sure that the pastor talked about love but I did not understand the kind of love God offered.
My thought process was something like this, “so, he sends us here knowing we can never be perfect and then punishes us for not being perfect?” As a child, I never really lived pass that point. Needless to say, I made a decision that when my parents stopped making me go to church, I wasn’t going. I vowed to stay out of his way and hoped that he would be as courteous. From the ages of 16-29 church visits were limited to weddings, funerals and out of respect when I visited friends who made it a household rule.
I have always believed in God; specifically, as a creator – the supreme being. I did not know him as a Father, provider, friend, teacher or savior. And Jesus? I couldn’t fathom. But it is good that my parents followed the instruction to “train up a child in the way he/she should go.” When my life was moving along nicely and doors were opening, but I still felt unfulfilled, it was not into the arms of a stranger nor to an outside vice that I ran to – it was God. He called me, and though I didn’t hear the voice, I felt the pull and, I went to church searching for “something.” There was no wedding or funeral and no friend to hang on to. It was me, myself and my void.
That was about five years ago. Today, I love Him. I am learning still the principle of total trust, unbridled faith and submission. It is still a process and maybe it always will be to some degree, but I love Him. Sometimes we converse, sometimes I over talk and sometimes I do not say enough. I almost never listen. Yet, He has committed unconditional love. And, even when He doesn’t answer – I know that He hears. When His answer is no and I pout? (Yes, I pout) He draws me closer.
Even as I write this, I am a little upset with Him. But, that is a comfort to me because we are in a relationship. Relationships are not always giddy giggles and hearty laughs. Sometimes we cry. But when you are committed and you take a vow for life, you fight for your loved one even when you fight with them. This is my story. I love Him and I am committed”
When I read my own love story, I have never been more clear about the commitment God has made. Even knowing that I would be imperfect, stubborn, disobedient and at times ungrateful, He still promised not to leave nor forsake me (Deuteronomy 31:6, Hebrews 13:5). He gave His only son to save me – just in case, I decided to say yes to the offer of salvation (John 3:16-17). God committed unconditional (agape) love, without the certainty of reciprocation. And yes, there are consequences to the actions of bad behavior but He chastises those that He loves (Hebrews 12:6). God continues to bless our lives in the most unimaginable ways. Therefore, when we love others, we should do it sacrificially.
When it gets hard, and it will, I encourage you to press into God’s love.
Peace and blessings