Wednesday, February 19, 2014

In the Name of Love

Even with Valentine's Day behind us, my mind remains on the subject of love.  Perusing my Facebook, scrolling through Pintrest, and spending even a little time on Eharmony, I got to thinking about the difference between love and lust.  Romantic love is such an odd dog.  Within a family you typically love even the most obnoxious of the bunch, clearly making a choice to put up with their quirks and annoyances; with friends it isn't quite the same, but coming together on that plain makes sense even to my addled brain…but romantic love?  A love that often begins with attraction?  Lust even?  This sort of love kind of shoots over my head.  Is it more complicated than hormones?  Less?  Why does it seem that the guys I'm always interested in are never interested in me and vice verse?  Am I too caught up in the attraction aspect?  Am I so dang screwed up that lust has become a driving factor in relationships I'm willing to pursue?

It's very stressful and likely I'm over thinking it, but it did lead me to confront some of the definitions I had in my head.  Ultimately I concluded this, that the difference between love and lust is really quite simple.  Once the object of lust ceases to satisfy whatever hole it has filled, it is cast aside much like a broken tool might be.  The object of love, on the other hand, will not suffer this fate because love holds dear the object itself rather than its usefulness.

This is how God loves us, how He loves me even though I am a broken and battered tool that might be easily tossed aside.  He created me in His own image (Genesis 1:27), knit me together in my mother's womb (Psalm 139:13), and He is working to complete the good work He began in me (Philippians 1:6).

This good work calls me to love in the same way, to care for those who can do nothing for me, and may even do me harm (Matthew 5:43-48).  This is difficult and painful and I fail miserably at it…yet God is patient and brings me to my knees in repentance, humbling and softening me.

I still don't have an answer about romantic love, it still remains a mystery, but I think learning about the difficult task of love is a good lesson that might one day help me love better in marriage, in motherhood.  No matter what, I am thankful for the lesson, and pray that as I continue to walk this difficult road I will be a beacon of Christ's love to the watching world.

No comments: