Remember that time when you first fell in love, when your body felt light and your eyes sparkled whenever the object of your attraction neared? Remember how even the very mention of their name brought joy, a sudden smile? Remember how you spent time writing their name, dreaming of your time together, took immense care of your body and appearance? Falling in love takes us all in, no reservations, a stumble into relationship that begins with seeds of trust and the overwhelming desire to know more, and matures into sanctuary and intimacy. Maintaining that initial attraction through the valleys of life, through challenges to your very relationship, that is the stuff of a solid marriage. Yet dark times come and how we respond to those is key. Do we back away or huddle closer? Do we look for others who might recreate that loving feeling? I am asking because I think I am falling in love.
I am on the verge of falling in love with God after a lifetime of watching His goodness all around me. God and I are dancing, a slow waltz that allows us to alternate who is leading, allows me to get comfortable with Him being so close. Having always noticed His presence all around me, I am considering asking Him to be my life partner, knowing I will be committing myself to this love forever more. Exploring this new territory, like a trip to foreign lands, my senses are alive and my body is awake, I rush about noticing every detail. A veil has been lifted, a curtain of lies that distorted my view so that all I saw was a wall between us, ways that I did not deserve His love. Whispers of the enemy told me He did not love me like He loves you, like the girl with an unattainable crush, I was outside of the circle, I watched from afar. But now God and I are dating. He is bringing me flowers of hope, candy boxes of sweetness, showing up with the consistency of a lover who knows just how skittish I am. Remember that feeling of knowing you are desired? I know now that my God has desired me with that ferocity, with patience He has waited for me to notice Him, that He has carried a crush for me long before I knew His name.
I am learning about this God who longs for more than coffee with me in the morning, this God aches for intimacy, for my thoughts and dreams to include Him all day. At the beginning of all relationships, we evaluate how much to trust, what secrets to tell, how much of our life to share. Entering into this love relationship with God, I am discovering He knows all the bad parts and actually walked alongside me during those. When I wondered where He was because He wasn’t stopping the horrors, I missed that He was crying as well. He couldn’t control the devastation but He would suffer with me and wait for me to turn to Him for comfort. I know He can’t control the ugliness that we inflict on each other if only because then we lose our ability to choose Him, our need to select this relationship above all others. I am reminded of the remote control car my Plum has maneuvered about the house, making the car crash and come back to him. The car has no choice to avoid the accidents but neither does it choose to return to its master. God is not controlling any of us, crashing us about our world and into each there and then bringing us back home. I see now that I have the glorious option of choosing, a gift beyond all the others that He has given to me. I have been violated to the point of crushing my soul, yet He will not breech my boundaries, He will not take ,only give.
So what does falling in love with God look like? I think I am called to bring Him flowers of hope as well, as I care for His other loves: my friends, my enemies, strangers and neighbors. I am asked to share candy boxes of sweet words and encouraging messages to those who are unsure and aching and experiencing loneliness while He waits for them to notice Him, to see Him sitting close by as well. God wants my love, all of it and then together we will sprinkle glittering grace to His people. Make no mistake, committing to this marriage to God means I am forsaking all others, I will put no one or thing above Him, between us. A momentous decision, I am moving carefully in allowing Him to have all of me. The colors of my world are growing brighter, light is shining in to dark places and truth is replacing lies. The windows of my soul are opening to fresh spring breezes even as autumn is surrounding me. I am dating God, a heady time of getting to know each other, of feeling the rush at the sound of His name. Please excuse me if I seem a bit giddy, blushing like a school girl, caught daydreaming while we talk. I think I am falling in love.