Love So Amazing

Posted: February 14, 2009 in Life Change, My Faith

Valentine’s Day. It’s that holiday that allows you to show your true expressions and feelings for someone. One of my fondest memories in regards to V-day is from elementary school. The day before we would always get a shoe box and decorate it with construction paper in some form of a mailbox with a nice slot cut in the top. On V-day itself, we would all bring in our cards that we bought from the store that come in those cheap bulk boxes. It would usually be a cartoon character of some kind with about 5 or 6 different types of cards in them and about 5 copies of each. I remember the night before carefully selecting which card I was going to give to which person in the class. Now of course I would pick the biggest and best card for whatever girl I was crushing on at that time in hopes that a few extra x’s and o’s would let her know how I felt about her. When the day finally came I remember going through each card and reading them carefully to see if any of them had any deeper meaning than just “Happy Valentines.” Of course they didn’t, but I would like to think they did.

My greatest memory of Valentines day came when I was in middle school. I remember getting home from school and my dad telling us to dress up and he was going to take us somewhere special. Now dressing up and going to dinner was already a big deal, but dressing up and driving into Knoxville for dinner at Regas was a huge deal. I remember driving down the road and my day pulling out a “tape.” That’s right…a “cassette tape.” He opened it up and told my mom that he wanted to share with her a song that they had known that expressed his feelings for her. When the tape started playing it was a big deal. For one, it was not a “christian song.” This was like the first time I had heard my dad say how much he liked a song and it had no spiritual meaning at all. The song was The Story of My Life by Neil Diamond. As the song played, my mom had tears of joy flowing down her face, and all I could picture were my parents in college driving down the road in my dads mustang jamming to Neil Diamond. The cool thing about that moment though was it gave me a sense of security. Security knowing that my parents had an unwavering love for each other that was going to keep me stable in my life.

When I think about the Lord and how selfish I have been in my love towards Him, it breaks my heart. The crazy thing about it is the Creator of the universe loves me with an unconditional, unwavering, self-sacrificing, radical love. So how do I normally respond to that love? By going to church. By reading my Bible a few minutes a day. By praying what is normally a selfish prayer. To me that seems so complacent. The only way to live a truly fulfilled Christian life is to return the love back to God. Not that I can ever reach the height of the love He has for me, but that I should be striving to be there. That I should be willing to give up everything. When I look at my parents and my dad searching everywhere for a cheesy tape of a cheesy song just to express his love for my mom, it sticks with me. I see my sisters and my brother-in-laws and the whole hearted devotion they have for each other. It sticks with me. Then I see my God, and how he gave up everything for me in the name of love. Why? Because when you are crazy in love with someone, it changes everything! It demands something from me! A phrase that I can’t stop thinking about this week is from the old song writer Isaac Watts who wrote When I Survey the Wondrous Cross. In that hymn he says this… “Love so amazing, so divine, demands my life, my soul, my all.” Wow…

P.S.- I really do like Neil Diamond by the way. You can’t go wrong with some Sweet Caroline. Especially when you have all of Fenway Park in Boston singing it at every Redsox game. Classic!

  1. Chuck says:

    Neil Diamond? Man, you are old.

    The thing about love that always gets me is this: just when I think I have it all figured out, God shows me something new. Love is an ever-growing action and I think that growing closer and closer to God goes hand-in-hand with gaining new understandings about love. He is love’s source. And the Bible says we can’t know love without knowing Him and vice-versa.

    Our small, human celebration of love every February 14th pales in comparison to His celebration of love every day. He gives us every day, and all of Himself in it.

  2. Amy says:

    I almost posted about the Neil Diamond song and going to Regas! =] I still remember what I ate. Hawaiian Chicken and Rice Pilaf. haha That was a big deal.

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