Monday, June 25, 2012
The Divine Romance
All my life, I've been fascinated by love. I suppose it stems from the fact my parents got a divorce when I was twelve years old. I'd never witnessed true love myself. I'd always wondered about this "mystical" phenomena. I gravitated toward stories that spoke of triumphing over "evil" through the power of love.
Even as a young child, I was drawn toward romance novels. I never knew a man and woman could love each other so deeply. Of course, they were only fictional stories, but that didn't stop me for wishing for the same in my life. Writing about true love was what I wanted to do with my life. Ever since I knew I was good at writing, I began writing about love. I wrote poems, short stories, and novellas. Until one day, I wrote a full-length novel.
I wrote and I wrote and I wrote. Stories flowed out of me. The more I wrote, the more plots I had. I wrote more novels. More stories. More, more, more about the power of love. It never ceased to fascinate me, no matter how many years had passed. I'd sigh, swoon, and smile in satisfaction when another happy ending was written. Another victory for love.
But soon, my stories became less about love and more about getting famous. They became less about victory and more about how to shock and titillate. They became less about my childhood dreams and more about making a buck. That's when God showed me my own stories were an idol before Him.
He told me to lay them down. After months of soul-searching, praying, and the enemy trying to convince me otherwise, I obeyed. And I've never looked back. But I had no idea God had a bigger plan in all of this. None of my fascination about true love would go to waste. He was about to teach me about the Ultimate Love Story.
The Divine Romance.
I've been a Christian since I was 13 years old. God Himself found me, I didn't find Him. Now, I'm 37. I've been following Jesus for almost 25 years. I always knew what He did for me. I think any Christian worth their salt does.
But what I didn't know was that all these years, God had been grooming me, not only to make a small impact on the world with my testimony for Him, but to teach me about HIM. About HIS Love. About HIS eternal devotion to us. To ME. Perhaps I wouldn't have understood His love story if I hadn't been an author of love stories myself. Perhaps I wouldn't have recognized the Hero who sacrificed Himself for the one He loves, Who gave Himself so totally and completely to save her, so that she wouldn't have to feel a drop of pain, sorrow, anguish, and torment herself.
Now I say "she", because the Church is known as the Bride of Christ. In this romance analogy, the Bride of Christ works. We are His beloved. We are His prize, His treasure.
Those romance novels that we all sigh over, the ones we remember the most, are the ones where the hero makes a sacrifice, humbles himself, and does everything in his power to protect and defend the woman he loves.
It is no different with what God did for us. True Love on display for the whole world to see, high upon the cross of Calvary.
There is no romance novel hero that could ever compare to my Yeshua. There is no mere man who could demonstrate his devotion in such a brutal and spectacular way. Not only did Yeshua die to pay, in full, my debt to God, but He imparted to me His perfect life as well. There is now no more condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).
Not only did God display His Love for me on the cross, but He gave me HIS OWN righteousness so that I could one day stand before Him, holy and blameless. So that one day, I could be where He is. So that one day...I would never, EVER leave Him.
For God so loved the world....that He couldn't stand the thought of His children forever separated from Him. He did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasped. He humbled Himself, and God Almighty came into this world...as a helpless infant. He grew in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and man. He taught us how to live and how to love. He broke the "rules" of religion, and showed us He wanted a love relationship. He wanted to lavish us with His everlasting love. But He had to die before He could.
Our sin is such a deep, ugly stain, that we cannot wash it out of ourselves. But by HIS blood, we are washed as white as snow.
Because of His act of love, He has bestowed upon me eternal life. He has given me His righteousness. He has given me His perfect life as MY OWN record. He now accepts me into His family. And He wishes, with all of His heart, to become MY Beloved, as I am His.
God has written for us the most amazing romance ever told. The Divine Romance. He is our Hero. He is our Beloved. He is the one who loves us more than any other. He is the One from whom all blessings flow.
I believe with all my heart God allowed me to become a romance author for a season to better and fully understand His Love toward us. It is more than a Father/child. It is more than King/servant. It is more than Teacher/student. He wants to be our All-in-all. This is what the First Great Commandment is all about -- Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.
We love God because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)
For me, romance novels no longer satisfy. How could they? My Hero is the King of the Universe, Who stepped off His throne, entered this world, bled, and died to save my soul. My Beloved is the One who loved me so utterly and completely that He swooped into my life and scooped me into His arms. The very One who whispers, "I will not leave you, nor forsake you."
Now that I have been awakened to the God of Love, now that I truly understand the depth of the Love that pulled me out of my own destruction, there is no other love story I can sigh over, no other book I can swoon at, and no other ending I can smile to - over THIS Love Story. The Story of stories.
Why do I obsess over Yeshua? Why am I such a "Jesus Freak"? Because I am absolutely, 100%, head-over-heels in LOVE with my God. There is nothing I love more in this life, and nothing I want more in this life than Him and Him alone. I do not love Him with an eros love, but with an all-consuming agape love that will one day be fully realized in Heaven.
It goes without saying -- I cannot WAIT for That Glorious Day.