The tide of Valentine’s day has slowly but steadily risen to engulf not only New Year’s but also Christmas. Valentine’s Day – the one day a year we all live in the fantasy that our relationships consist only of bliss and ecstasy. We turn a blind eye to our partner’s faults in pursuit of a love that makes us feel good, that’s comfortable, that’s self-serving. We idolize romance and in so doing sacrifice reality. It was Shakespeare who first coined the phrase “love is blind” (The Merchant of Venice), so the idea that the nature of love includes ignoring and glossing over each other’s warts and scars and failures is not new. But is this the kind of love that we, as children of God, should strive to give? Is this the kind of love that God shows us?
The love of God is far from blind.
I, for one, am thankful that the love of God is far from blind. God sees us as we truly are, He knows us more intimately than we even know ourselves and yet He chooses…love. I never have to fear that God is going to find something out about me and quit loving me…He already knows it all! And at the same time He is unwilling to allow me to continue in my sin. He is patient and kind, slow to anger and free from selfishness. He does not treat us as our sins deserve but embraces us as His beloved children in Christ.
When we refuse to be blind, when we take the time and effort to truly know someone, and we still choose to love them we are imaging God. It is through this I know you’re really messed up and you’ve hurt me and probably will again but I’m going to choose to love you anyway kind of love that people are drawn to and experience the grace and love of God. This is the way, through the power of the Holy Spirit, that I am seeking to love both those closest to me, my spouse, my family, my friends, and those I simply come into contact with each day. I want them to experience God’s all-seeing love through me.
“Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love. God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent His One and Only Son into the world so that we might live through Him. Love consists in this: not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Dear friends, if God loved us in this way, we must also love one another. No one has ever seen God. If we love one another, God remains in us and His love is perfected in us.” -1 John 4:7-11
This Valentine’s Day, let’s take off the blindfolds, look into each others lives and choose to love like God loves us.