“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” – 1 Peter 4:8
Have you ever just stood somewhere and burned in your skin? Burned because you wanted something you couldn’t have? Burned because something was happening that you couldn’t stop? Burned because you had needs that weren’t being met? Burned because you feel helpless, vulnerable? Well don’t. Do something about it.
There have been few times in my life where I have felt those feelings. When it comes though, it is the most suffocating and nearly indescribable force. I’ve spent some serious time over the past 3 years of my life trying desperately to find the source, or even better-the solution to such an experience. Here’s what I have come up with: [For me] The main source of the burning is Love. The only solution to release the suffocation of it’s power is to Love. Is it a contradiction?
One of the most inherent and God-given desires of a human is to love and be loved. Genesis 2:18 states, “And the LORD God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.’ ” So why do we feel the need to explain or excuse our feelings when loneliness creeps its way into our lives? Why are there societal expectations to hide our need to be with someone; to share life with another? This day and hour puts so much pressure on independence and self-sufficiency that it almost deems the ‘need for another’ to be shameful or a show of weakness. Is needing love weak? To me, I think the most passionate way to show love is to show someone your need for them. Think of it this way; what does God want from us? He wants us to love Him and need Him. We are to love Him with ALL of our heart, with ALL of our soul, and with ALL of our mind (Luke 22:34-37). That was the greatest commandment Christ spoke. Serious passion right? Do you remember the second commandment he uttered to the Pharisees? That we should love our neighbor as ourself (Luke 22:38-40). Stick with me here. We are made in God’s image, and designed and taught to model Christ’s perfect behaviour, right? If Jesus’ own words and actions consistently revolved around love, what part of ourselves are we denying if we mask our need for love or to show love?
There is so much detail we could go into about how to love, who to love, where to draw the line, different types of love, etc. Let me make it as black and white as it can get:
Love suffers long and is kind
Love does not envy
Love does not parade itself, is not puffed up
Love does not behave rudely, does not seek its own
Love is not provoked, thinks no evil
Love does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things
Love Never Fails…
-1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Does it say anywhere in there that love is easy? Does it say that it is unnatural? Do you see the words weak or helpless? No. In fact it says that love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. To me that speaks of strength. Take comfort in this. It is ok to want someone to love! You might be 15 and you might be 85, but love is natural and it is good. Search your heart, follow God’s call on your life and go where He leads. Have you ever really made the person you want to spend your life with a consistent item of your daily prayers? God wants us to love Him fully, but He also designed us to love people. In case you didn’t realize, that means that you can love someone romantically and pray for that to come in to your life. It really is okay! Remember, we have not because we ask not. Allow yourself to ask. “And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.” -Matthew 21:22
The only thing we should burn with passion over is Christ. So don’t allow yourself to stand there and burn in your skin. Have passion for people, but direct it somewhere instead of allowing it to consume you. Our God grants us the desires of our heart. If love is your desire do so with commitment, strength, and depth. Take it seriously. Self-denial in that area will only get you so far when even God himself declared that it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone. [Side note: This isn’t a free for all for people to profess every romantic idea in their heart to someone, or become the self-professing ‘heart on their sleaver’.] Rather, see this as a memento of encouragement for those who love to love. Those who need to love, but are suppressing their heart for any number of reasons. Our God is the INVENTOR of love. Meditate on that for a while.
“This is one of the miracles of love: It gives a power of seeing through its own enchantments and yet not being disenchanted.” – C.S. Lewis