romance

Lesson of Love

It was the day of the year I dreaded the most.

No algebra exam or P.E. class mile run could rival the distaste I felt. My stomach would be in knots, my heart heavy, my head swimming.

It was Valentine’s Day in high school. (DUM, DUM, DUM…)

Just typing that sentence made me wrinkle my nose a little bit. But before you think I am gonna be sippin’ on some Valentine’s Day Hatorade (get it? Hater? Gatorade?)  let me explain my perspective.

See, I never dated anyone in high school. Actually, I never dated anyone until the last 40 days of college. And that cool dude became my husband. I sure don’t regret the way things worked out… but Valentine’s Day in high school still kinda sucked for us singles.

The morning would start out ok. But as the day wore on… things went downhill. At the end of the hallway was the school admin office. With huge clear glass windows. It was unavoidable to notice the changes of that stinkin’ countertop’s contents with each passing class.

It would start slowly. Maybe with one rose in a vase. Then a few teddy bears were added to the mix. Some balloons showed up, followed by the influx of flowers that would make wedding flowers seem pathetic. By the time that final bell rang at 3:10pm, the office was overflowing with candy, trinkets, floral arrangements… and the giddy girls who received them.

(Sidenote: Flowers are ridiculously expensive. I am not sure where these high school boys were working and/or getting their allowance from, but I sure would have appreciated a job application to rake in that kind of dough when I was 16.)

Obviously, I was never on the receiving end of those extravagant gifts. As I stomped to my car, past the groups of clucking flower/balloon/chalky heart recipients, thoughts swirled through my head, ranging from “poor, poor, pitiful me” to “I bet if I catch that heifer off guard, I could grab her box of chocolates and make a break for it.”

Fortunately, my Mama raised me with self-control and I never did anything too irrational during my brief moments of pity, jealousy and annoyance.

AND…  I am super happy to report that I really don’t feel the same way about Valentine’s Day anymore. Not because I have a husband, but because I am really not too attached to “dates” and “holidays” on the calendar. (Honestly, my husband is the Anti-Valentine’s Dayer… he thinks it’s some commercialized made up holiday. Spoken like a true man, right?)

My semi-indifference to Valentine’s Day is an acquired army wife skill. Today marks the third Valentine’s Day that my beloved and I aren’t together. And honestly… I’m ok with it. Due to his career in the army, we’ve missed varying numbers of Valentine’s Day, Christmas, Thanksgiving, 4th of July, birthdays, etc. (Fortunately, he was present at our wedding. Whew.)

I don’t need flowers, chocolates, balloons or teddy bears from him. If I want flowers, I buy some cheap ones for myself. I don’t need chocolate… period. (Minus the stash in the top of my pantry.) Balloons are a little inconvenient, and who needs a teddy bear when you have an adorable Baby Dog? (Plus, I have a “date” tonight with one of my good girl friends and her kids… Complete with a recipe for chocolate avocado mousse. I will report back on that one after we see how it turns out.)

All I need for Valentine’s Day… well, any day for that matter… is my ultimate bridegroom… Jesus.

This goes for all us– single, dating, married, together or separated by duty. Christ is the ultimate romancer. His love is everlasting and eternal. He woos us, sweeping us off our feet! Jesus didn’t give us chalky candy hearts or an expensive bouquet of flowers… He gave us HIS LIFE.

So for everyone out there that is celebrating Valentine’s Day today, I go for it. That’s awesome. Romance rocks. But regardless of your relationship status, remember the most important love relationship…

Our relationship with Jesus… He loves us unconditionally, always keeps His promises, and gave up His Life for us.

Yep. That’s the ultimate lesson of love.

Sharing the Love,

SGK

“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life.” — John 3:16 (MSG) 

Valentine's Day 2012 Calendar

Source Here

Categories: army, chocolates, Christ, heart, Love, romance, roses | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Our Heart and Macaroni Art

I saw him from a distance. My heart started to pound. I smoothed my hair and gave myself a mental brownie point for wearing my favorite shirt. I considered moving closer to him… but he turned and started walking toward me. My breathing sped up. He was coming. He was beautiful. And I knew I belonged to him. 

Pretty romantic huh? Probably sounds like every chick flick ever produced. But I am not talking about anyone tall, dark and handsome (or blonde with blue eyes in my case.) I am talking about God. Our Father. Our One.

Perhaps I should back up a little bit. God (obviously) loves us and woos us. Last week, I had a dream where God told me to fall back in love with Him. A few days later, I awoke in a panic, realizing that I hadn’t had my official CRAVE time (quiet meditation) with Him at church in over a month (maybe even two!) I had been doing my daily Bible study during our leave vacation, but my heart wasn’t really focused. My mind was all over the place, and I bet if you pick a page on my journal from the last two weeks, it will be pointless gibberish.

So I needed to fall back in love with God and CRAVE Him. I was still working on my 1000 gift list, but He told me it wasn’t enough. I prayed about it for the next few days and when we arrived back in Georgia, one of our first things to do (after unloading the car and sleeping) was to head to church. Confession: I was tired. Really didn’t want to go.

But I am sure glad I did.

I arrived at CCC and was blown away. The worship song line up was incredible. (Good thing they didn’t play Amazing Grace, or I would have been sobbing face down in the aisle.) I felt myself falling… back in love with God. Then the message sealed the deal. Why? Because for the first time in my experience at Christ Community, we actually had a mini CRAVE time.

I realized that God wasn’t asking me to do anything but receive His love. That in itself allowed me to fall back in love with Him. He met me there and swept me off my feet. Again. But we have to be attentive to Him and show Him that we care. All of the things we DO for our amazing God like prayer, petitioning, quiet time, worship etc seem so small compared to the beauty and glory that is our Bridegroom Jesus.

But God is our father. And He adores our acts of love, as small as they might seem in our eyes. We are like the child, coming home from school and giving Dad a picture with dried out noodles on it. Our small actions are simply love in the form of macaroni art. He doesn’t throw it out. He appreciates it and puts it on the fridge.

The stores are already putting out Valentine’s candy, so for the next month and a half the world will pushing THAT holiday (didn’t we just finish UP a holiday season?) But the cards, flowers and candy don’t mean as much as the macaroni art that we can give to God.

It’s a new year. How are you going to fall deeper in love with God? What kind of macaroni art are you going to make for Him in 2012?

Receive Him. Fall deeply in love with Him. Give Him your heart and some “macaroni art.”

From the elbow (macaroni) to the heart,

SGK

“Get up, my dear friend, fair and beautiful lover—come to me!” Song of Solomon 2:10 (MSG)

Categories: gifts, God, Love, romance | Leave a comment

Behold the Beauty (Part 3)

Have I mentioned… He calls YOU beautiful?

This was actually the title of a great speech given by one of our keynote speakers at the Women’s retreat… Hollie shared a lot of great points, many of which you might find lurking in this post.

God created us in HIS image, specifically “Imago Dei.” I doubt many of us would have the cajones to call God anything but beautiful, marvelous, worthy, beloved…. So why would we do that to ourselves if we are made BY Him, IN Him, as a reflection OF Him?

“Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.’ So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them…God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” 

–Genesis 1:26-27, 31.


When we tear ourselves to pieces, convincing ourselves that we aren’t good enough, smart enough or straight up not beautiful enough, we aren’t just dissing ourselves… We are knocking God’s awesome creation! He made each of us different for a reason. Some people are tall, some short, some round, others thin, red/black/brown/blonde hair, big nose, little lips, each and every piece of us he made with a purpose. He didn’t just put thought into our creation– he put his LOVE in us. Into our hearts. Our inner selves. HE MADE US BEAUTIFUL!!

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 1 Peter 3:3-4


He calls YOU beautiful… He is your suitor, constantly wooing you, whispering sweet words into your heart. He adores you– every single part of you, from the freckles to the “bad hair days” down to your slightly crooked little pinky toe. He revels in your beauty, even when we don’t act very beautiful or are battling some ugly things in our hearts. He loves us unconditionally– and that will never, ever change, no matter how you act, what you wear or how much make-up you have on.  He calls YOU beautiful– because He loves you!

“‘You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared.” Ezekiel 28:12-13


He thinks you are so beautiful and worthy that he gave His one and only son for you. Trust the Lord and understand that He knew what he was doing. You are the most beautiful one he ever laid eyes one– He’s crazy about you!!

“All beautiful you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you.” –Song of Solomon 4:7

So my dear reader, as I close out this beauty-driven blog post series, I have a final plea for you. Next time you are bashing on yourself and have any kind of thought other beauty towards yourself, please remember: God calls you beautiful, from the moment that you stumble out of bed to the instant you lay your head on the pillow and everything in between.

Please, call yourself beautiful. Say it outloud. Right now. “Thank you God, for making me so beautiful. I am blessed to be your masterpiece.” He is beautiful and you were made in His image… even though sacrificing his beloved son on the cross was painful, ask Him about it… and He will tell you that it was SO worth it. He calls you beloved. Call yourself beloved. Call yourself beautiful.Why? Because you ARE!

Remember that beauty is in the eye of the beholder– and He is the supreme beholder!Head over heels in LOVE with Him,
SGK

“Bravo, God, Bravo! Everyone join in the great shout: Encore! In awe before the beauty, in awe before the might.” –Psalm 96:7 (MSG)




Categories: beautiful, God, romance, wooing | Leave a comment

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