Tuesday, May 8, 2012
This, Then, Is Love
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, NIV
Today, a video popped up on my Facebook news feed, from the Desiring God ministry page. It is a video story about a couple named Ian and Larissa.
At the time, I had several things going at once; things I was researching on-line, and then, of course, there was the usual circus-like atmosphere at home -- phones and doorbells ringing, dog barking because phones and doorbells are ringing -- so I was somewhat distracted. And unless something REALLY jumps out at me on Facebook, video-wise, I will often bypass it in my intense state of distraction and trying to shut out all the aforementioned noise.
THANK YOU GOD that THIS was NOT the case this afternoon!
Interestingly enough, there was no eye-catching thumbnail nor cleverly crafted words in the post to jump out and grab my attention to this post and video. It was actually just a gentle nudge I felt from the Holy Spirit to check it out. I'm so glad that I obeyed that nudge.
Ian's and Larissa's story is a sweet and simple story of love. Real, pure and true love. Love that doesn't disintegrate or disappear
when life gets hard
when plans suddenly make a 180 degree turn
when suffering becomes a du jour item on your menu
when what you've always wanted doesn't come packaged the way you dreamed or wanted
But very often -- and I can declare this truth personally -- our greatest gifts and blessings do not come packaged the way we've dreamed or wanted.
This is not to say that as I watched this video, with tears streaming down my face, I did not have questions that chased one another through my head. Questions for God that echoed the ones that author and Women of Faith speaker Sheila Walsh asks in her book 'Living Fearlessly,' a book I'm currently reading; questions that perhaps you have, and I'm sure, questions that Ian and Larissa have for God as well:
"What if my hopes and dreams are different from Yours?"
"If You can heal, why are there times You choose NOT to?"
"If You love me so much, why is life so hard?"
"Will You give me more than I can bear?"
"Where ARE You in all of this?"
These are questions for which there are no answers, this side of Heaven anyway. All I know is that it is obvious that Jesus Christ was not only invited to Ian's and Larissa's wedding, but He was invited into the very center of their marriage.
A marriage based on the selfless, completely committed, unfailing and unconditional love of Jesus.
As you watch this video, I invite and encourage you to please pray for Ian and Larissa. And have some tissues ready. For this, then -- is Love.
The Story of Ian & Larissa
This love of which I speak is slow to lose patience—it looks for a way of being constructive. It is not possessive: it is neither anxious to impress nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own importance.
Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage. It is not touchy. It does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad with all good men when truth prevails.
Love knows no limit to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that still stands when all else has fallen. ~
1 Corinthians 13:4-8, PHILLIPS Translation