TO BE FULLY KNOWN
Musings of a Hopeful Romantic
Of course I had to write about love. It is Valentine's Day! This is not a holiday I have ever really enjoyed. I used to wish for the kind of love that causes someone to go a little silly with gifts or surprises, but that just never happened for me. To say the day is usually a massive disappointment is quite the understatement. I've had the occasional flower thrown my way, "Oh, crap it's Valentine's Day!"
I've always been a hopeless romantic. My family will tell you that I cried when we would watch Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella every year. I can't help myself. I love a good love story. I prefer romantic comedies to just about any other genre of movie, but I've always watched them alone or with a friend or sister. I've never met a man who cares to watch those kinds of movies. That isn't a prerequisite for me in the search for someone to be the love of my life in the last years of my life. It is unrealistic to expect men to understand the sappy side of the female brain. It makes most of them extremely uncomfortable.
One of my favorite movies is Bridget Jones' Diary. The line that gets me is "I like you, just as you are." Who doesn't want that? It changes the whole tone of the movie. Bridget thinks this man believes her to be an absolute fruitcake, and yet he says this to her and it completely disarms her. It is all she can think about. Perhaps that is why I like movie so very much.
I was listening to the radio on the way to work as I do. I was thinking about love and the song "Fully Known" started playing. It is one of my favorite songs. God's love is such that he fully knows us, every flaw, mistake, and imperfection and loves us just as we are. He doesn't ask us to perform tricks, or sing on key, or trim our nose hairs just so. He loves us, just as we are. He proved it by dying for us, before we were born. I love this chorus.
I'm fully known and loved by You
You won't let go no matter what I do
And it's not one or the other
It's hard truth and ridiculous grace
To be known fully known and loved by You
I love those words. They are so true. I've grown to understand just how much God loves me and it is that love that keeps me going day in and day out. I've thought about that love a lot over the last several years. I've written about love in this blog before. We are created in God's image and God is love. We long for love of varying degrees. Our souls need love to feel whole, complete and full. This is why when we get divorced or lose a spouse or a parent our lives crumble and it takes decades sometimes to repair the hurt or the loss. We didn't just lose a person, we lost the love that they provided on a daily basis. Just like a balloon without air, life without love is flat and unexceptional.
Love is the helium that floats our lives into the clouds above the fray.
When I was thinking about this blog I was reminded of a scripture where Paul is telling husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself sacrificially to redeem her to himself. That is what this song means to me. I have always longed for someone to know all of my faults and still love me enough to want to protect me from harm. I've never had that in a relationship. I want someone to see my imperfections and not be bothered by them, or want to change them. It would be nice to hear kind words that express appreciation for what I do, instead of constant criticism for what I didn't do.
God's love is safe. It is perfect. It is full of grace and peace. No matter how much I fail Him, it isn't He who reminds me of those failures. It is me. I Imagine Jesus hugs when I am feeling like a failure. They are warm full of forgiveness and acceptance. I don't have to perform. I don't have to trim my wild eyebrow hair or clip my fingernails to a perfect shape. I don't even have to wear make up, comb my hair, or dress like Melania Trump. I just have to be me.
I'm fully known and fully loved by the God of the Universe, the savior of the world. I don't need a partner in this life. However, I am a romantic. I would be lying if I said I love being alone all the time. It would be wonderful to find a man who would take the time to know me and still love me. I will never be a size 5, or win a beauty pageant. I've spent a lot of time trying to fit into someone else's idea of the perfect mate. It just doesn't work for me. I always fail to live up to their standards, which depresses me and disappoints him. Enough!
Now that I know who God has made me to be, life has truly changed. I Imagine Jesus saying, "You only have to have faith to please me. That faith is what changes you to be who you were meant to be." I am no longer afraid of the quirky, silly, creative person that I am. I'm not going to hide her under a pound of make up, or behind a sexy dress. I'm going to shine and hopefully I will attract someone who is looking for a unique less-than-perfect partner in love.
I'm not a stamped cookie that looks like all the others - perfectly decorated. I'm a twisted mess covered in cinnamon sugar - spicy and sweet, warm and gooey. I love deeply and hurt just as intensely. I'm passionate and sensitive. I'm witty and clever. This is who God made me. When I try to hide those things for the sake of acceptance I think it hurts God's feelings. There is a reason he put all of that inside of me. It certainly wasn't so I could pretend to be someone that I am not!
Happy Valentine's Day! If you're in love - hooray! If you're alone - hooray! There is love available for free any time of day or night. It doesn't have to come from a man or a woman. The best most reliable source of love comes from God, who loves us just as we are.
1 John 4:7-21 "Beloved, let’s love one another; for love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love. By this the love of God was revealed in us, that God has sent His only Son into the world so that we may live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God remains in us, and His love is perfected in us. By this we know that we remain in Him and He in us, because He has given to us of His Spirit. We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him, and he in God. We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who remains in love remains in God, and God remains in him. By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, we also are in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, “I love God,” and yet he hates his brother or sister, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother and sister whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God must also love his brother and sister.