Love. It’s all around me. People are talking about it, falling into it, stepping on it, and talking about it like it’s the latest phenomenon since… Twitter.
Before you think that I am some sort of bitter, cynical, recently burned young professional who graduated without an engagement ring (an uncommon occurrence at my Alma Mater), I’m not. I’m just saying it seems to be a reoccurring theme in my life right now. And I’m OK with that.
I love “love” actually. I’m a HUGE fan. I’m fairly confident that if you met me in person and we could sit down and catch up over a cup of coffee, you would come to the conclusion that I was the biggest, sappiest most hopeless romantic you had ever met. And I would take it as a compliment.
So the fact that the subject of love has been somewhat saturating and all encompassing doesn’t bother me in the slightest. It actually inspires all sorts of new thoughts, ideas, dreams, and truths that bring an extraordinary amount of joy and freedom.
Here’s an example: I saw a romantic comedy this evening and, for all intents and purposes, it was the same as every other romantic comedy. I think most men would agree with me when I say that they are all the same: predictable, really cheesy, and completely unrealistic.
Whatever. I still like them.
In this particular movie, the main characters were in no way, shape, or form attracted to one another in the beginning. They loathed each other as a matter of fact. Long story short, the more time they spent together and began to see the root of why personality quirks and character flaws were what they were, an intense understanding, empathy and bonding formed. And of course, they fell in love and when unavoidable circumstances took the girl away from they guy, he did everything to find her, declare his love and sweep her off her feet.
Same song, second verse.
For whatever reason though, I discovered something new about myself that I was surprised by. I think that, in the middle of watching this ridiculous film, I came up with something I want to be able to say about/to the man that I marry… someday.
“I would rather be driven crazy because of you then be sane without you.”
Ok, now for a bigger revelation that I feel like the Lord opened the eyes of my heart to see recently.
I’m willing to bet the most famous love story would be that of Romeo and Juliet. Written and rewritten countless times and in countless variations throughout generations. It is the one story that seems to be the foundation for most movie and novel plots if you really think about it. If ever there are two characters in love, there always seems to be an outside force trying to keep them apart.
Give it up to William Shakespear for leaving his mark on world literature. Romeo and Juliet is unparalleled. Love has never been made to feel more real or more jaded. What woman, or person for that matter, can read it and not be able to identify with a character? Who has never been at odds with their family? Who has never yearned and longed for such an unbridled, pure and passionate love? Call me crazy, but is there not something in every heart, every soul, that knows that there is a love, a relationship, and a communion with another soul that they were meant to partake in? Is there not something about the selfless and reckless abandon to love someone more than yourself that is so innately intoxicating it can not be stifled, despite our efforts?
I dare say there is.
In a moment of daydreaming, it dawned on me: I’m Juliet.
And my Romeo is God Himself.
From a different family; another world that collided with mine when he abdicated His throne for me. Ignoring the questions and silencing the lies, he has pursued me. He has sought me out among the scoffers, the pious religious elect, and those who’s bloodlines would be far more worthy and right for such a calling; for such a union.
He saw me and loved me in that moment; at first sight. His untamed love and fervent pursuit of me has filled in me something I did not know was empty, thus creating a longing and desire only for that which He offers. Nothing else is needed nor is anything else desired. What He has freely and graciously showed me and bestowed upon me is unlike anything I have seen, felt, heard, or experienced in my years here; in a broken and despairing world where love has no standard of measure. It is simply an accessory.
But where there is such romance, there is war. War for my time, attention, affection, and life. The Enemy is at odds against me. He is jealous over me not because he loves me, but because he hates Romeo. And what Romeo seeks to save, the Enemy would seek to destroy.
I am unable to save myself. I am not strong enough or equipped to fend off the onslaught of lies that would tell me all the reasons that Romeo and I can not be. I have a hard time believing it myself some days. So the constant reminders of my downfalls, shortcomings, and lack of breeding takes it toll and I grow tired of trying to fight back.
It’s really not even my battle.
But Romeo: the embodiment of strength, truth, love, and salvation, layed down his life in order to ransom mine. What I could not do, He did… for love. For a burning love of me.
And where the story would end in our realm, continues in His. Defeating death, conquering the grave, and overcoming those things that would keep me from him, I have now run away with him.
I escaped the lies; I was rescued from death. I was delivered from a loveless life.
I was saved.
And now, that love which first so captivated me and drew me in has flooded me completely and is teaching me, allowing me, to love the same way; to be fully alive. I never knew I wasn’t living, I didn’t know I had not experienced love and life until Him. Until Romeo redeemed me from the dark.
What your professors will never tell you is that Shakespear was the first to plagiarize.