Romance. The gift that I had singled out as the necessary missing ingredient in my existence. It was the gift that I intuitively knew would breathe enough wind in my sails that they might just come unfurled. After the year of depletion, I started on a quest to figure out how to receive romance from God, from my husband, and how to shower it on my kids.
I believed that the first piece to the puzzle was going to be reconnecting with the Master Romancer. I believe that our relationship with God is really a love affair. It’s not a relationship that hinges on dogma, doctrines, or fulfillment of the rules. It is a Creator loving His creation enough that He devised a way to personally and intimately connect with them. It is the bridegroom longing and providing for His bride.
Isaiah 55:5, 10 “For your Maker is your husband…though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love will not be shaken.”
However, while I believe this with assurance, I have always struggled to know that God loved me. I could share this love with others, I could point out His fingerprint of love in other peoples’ lives, and I could pray with faith for others – but when it came to whether or not I had a first-hand knowledge of His love, I struggled. I always have. That wasn’t anything new to the year of depletion. However, the pressure of the difficult year had amplified this love disconnect.
My plan to discover God’s love for me began with me simply opening up. I became a detective whose only goal was to find the Original Romancer; however, in this case, the one I pursued was also pursuing me. God and I spoke about what He was wishing for me, and how He wanted to reveal Himself to me in the ordinary. Because a sunrise, or a flower, or the smiles of one of my kids seems so ordinary, I tended to miss the pursuit of it. And yet God, through these everyday blessings, was trying to woo me to Himself. Through His help, I was even able to see piles of laundry and stacks of dishes as evidence of a passionate suitor providing for His bride. Every day He was reminding me of His love. Over and over again.
And then there were the endless scripture verses that assured me of His pursuit. I started reading scripture with an eye to see His loving story with me.
Jeremiah 31:3 “I have loved you with an everlasting love.”
Exodus 34:14 “For the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.”
Hosea 2:14 “Therefore, I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her.”
And don’t get me started on Song of Songs…
Without the solid base of His love, I saw myself as trying to walk on a sidewalk that acted more like jello than cement. I had lost my bearing, ended up exhausted and dizzy, and was easily toppled. But as I began to become a receptacle for His love for me, the foundation of my faith began to return.
Declaring the new year as the Year of Romance gave me a direction that pointed me towards seeing God as a my pursuer. He became the father that ran to the estranged son – or in this case, the exhausted, depleted and disillusioned daughter. But with each glimpse of God as the definitive romantic, and with each time that He professed His love towards me through countless “ordinary” ways, I became aware of God choosing me every day, over and over, even when I deemed myself as unlovable.
Becoming open to God’s romance was an infusion of life to my heart. I hope that you can take a moment to refocus on a Heavenly Father who passionately loves you and is, at this very moment, in pursuit of you.
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved (Ephesians 2:4-5).