While Valentine’s Day has no biblical significance, I find myself thinking of Jesus and His love for the Church, for me.
I am not interested in the hyped up Hallmark Channel fussiness of the holiday. There is something too off center about that representation of love — romantic love especially.
However, when I meditate on God the Father having given us Jesus as the greatest sacrifice ever and Jesus having gone to the cross joyfully for us (humankind), well, this kind of love — God’s kind of love — is worth celebrating and sharing in and sharing with others.
There is a sonnet by Shakespeare that I discovered in high school. I was one of those kids — you know, one of the kids that didn’t dread reading Shakespeare. Ha!
Shakespeare’s Sonnet XXVII got my attention the very first time I read it. I easily related to the feelings Shakespeare expressed — no matter how humorously he might have intended the sonnet to be.
I was in my last three years of high school in Georgia and there was a friend of mine back home in California. Oddly, we became closer friends with 3,000 miles between us. I immediately thought of him when I read the sonnet.
He was, in fact, my closest male friend — like let him read my journal and the love by which I compared all other guys for years, kind of closest. For better or worse too, folks, because it became a saga kind of love!
Our relational dynamic was like one of those storylines in an independent film — two people who care for each other deeply but cannot push past fear and hurts and insecurities to actually get a relationship off the ground. You know, the depressing ones with lots of scenes of drinking in bars and crying over the telephone.
But, even if it wasn’t the best kind of love, I did love him and I believe he loved me too. We were young and foolish, and bitten by fearfulness.
I continued to think of him every time Sonnet XXVII came to my remembrance until this one day.
It was early on in the days of coming back home to the Lord. I had remembrance of the sonnet, having recited it from memory even, and it was like Jesus said to me that He had longed for me and thought of me ceaselessly. But, I also had this knowing in me that Sonnet XXVII was still off center from depicting His love.
His love was different and more, much more.
The Holy Spirit, a couple of years later, led me into Song of Solomon and other places in the word, helping me to receive understanding about why the love of Jesus is different and more.
Some of the loveliest words I’ve read thus far were written by Solomon in those verses — a prophetic picture of Christ and His Bride. It’s no surprise that these verses are so often associated with weddings. But, unlike a friend and brother in Christ I know, I do not believe the reading of Song of Solomon should wait until our wedding night.
Reading Song of Solomon deepened my relationship with Jesus, especially as a single woman. He desires me and loves me and completes me and provides for me and gives me rest.
All in Him. All in His love.
I am finding more and more as I reflect back on life before really knowing God’s ways that eros love without His love is volatile.
There is a burning desire in my heart for all the love I experience to stem from the foundation of His love.
Because. His love. Is. The best kind of love.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friends!!!
May we experience more of His love today, and every day. Always.
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