What many people don’t know about me is that while I was very young when my parents got divorced, it had a strange impact on me. No-I didn’t understand much. I was confused and mostly just knew that my biological father was living somewhere else. That part didn’t really affect me.
I, like most little girls, had very unrealistic beliefs about who my father was. I would look up at him, tall and handsome, and even as a toddler, felt so much love in the depths of my heart for him. I remember being a tiny little girl, sitting on the floor of his apartment, and telling him I hoped that someday I would marry someone just like my daddy.
I believed that my daddy was strong. I believed that he was a warrior…and would protect me with every ounce of energy he had. Most of all, I truly believed that my daddy loved me more than anything in the entire world.
So what happened when all of my beliefs came caving in? When my knight in shining armor stopped showing up for my recitals & choir concerts…when the man I trusted most forgot to call me…when my daddy didn’t come over for holidays. I became more and more confused…more and more hurt…and my definition of love was completely skewed.
One day in High School, as I was listening to the radio, a country song by Faith Hill & Tim McGraw. The lyrics struck me…and I finally understood what I had been feeling for so many years. The lyrics said:
“How can you just walk on by
without one tear in your eye?
Don’t you have the slightest feelings left for me?
Maybe that’s just your way
of dealing with the pain-
forgetting everything between our rise and fall…
like we never loved at all.”
That was exactly how I felt! I couldn’t understand why a person I loved so much could just forget about me. I didn’t understand how my own father could just go on with his life, smiling, laughing, and being okay without me in it. This made me wonder how anyone could love me if my own biological father couldn’t. Would everyone eventually give up? Would every person I love forget about me?
My relationship with my biological father made it extremely difficult for me to understand or accept God’s love. First of all, thinking of God as my father felt strange. My father has a life completely separate from mine. Is that how life with God is? Will God be too busy to hear me or notice me?
Also, my definition of love was blurred. So many people throw around “I love you”, but could this God truly love me unconditionally? Even though I’m flawed? Even though I’m lost? Even though I make mistakes? He won’t abandon me even when I really screw up? I don’t understand that love.
The more I read scripture, the more overwhelmed I became by this love. I began to understand His love…I was finally realizing all that God has done for me…that He thinks I’m beautiful…He is jealous for me…He has a purpose and a plan for me…and He really loves me.
“And to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
That’s just it. God loves us so much it’s mind blowing. It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around it, even now.
None of us will ever feel deserving, qualified enough, or understanding of God’s crazy love for us. It is an incredible gift. But He wants each of us to accept it.
I don’t know who/what has defined love for you in your life. Absent parents, dysfunctional relationships, or maybe even abuse.
God wants to redefine love for you. He wants to show you the truest, most authentic, genuine love there is. Let’s be honest girls-we all want the love story. Whether it’s through watching cheesy lifetime movies or reading a Nicholas Sparks novel, we are all craving and seeking true love. But here’s the good news:
God is waiting to write your love story.