Saturday, February 14, 2009

Our Romantic God

Strengthen me with raisins, refresh me with apples, for I am faint with love. Song of Songs 2: 5

I used to cringe when Valentines day came each year. Being married to a man who is not into romance made it the most dreaded day of the year. I would smile through clenched teeth as every woman I knew recounted the latest romantic thing her husband or boyfriend did for her on Valentines day. I pretended to be happy for them while underneath I was filled with jealousy and envy. I dreamed of sweet-scented bouquets of flowers, mushy cards, hearts filled with chocolates, and candlelight dinners. Usually, as Valentines day drew to a close, I was once again left disappointed and glad that the day was finally over.

Later, when I became a Christian, I knew I was to trust in God to meet all my needs, but for years I still continued to struggle with the whole romance thing. I believed God would supply all my needs, but I often wondered how in the world He could supply my need for romance! Often I prayed about my need for romance, and while I felt content with my life, I still found myself filled with longing. Why couldn't my husband be more romantic? Why couldn't he be like all those other men?

I was walking through the woods one spring thinking about the lack of romance in my life. I was feeling sorry for myself and feeling unloved and uncared about. I remember praying out loud in desperation, "Lord, how can you ever meet my need for romance? I want to trust in You and serve You, but what about these longings in my heart? How do I deal with them?"

What happened next was one of those moments when you feel as if someone whacks you over the head and wakes you up. I stumbled across a beautiful bouquet of wildflowers. Expensive designer perfume couldn't compete with the sweet aroma that filled the air around me. Lovely shades of lavender, yellow, and blue commanded my attention. I found myself laughing out loud filled with joy. As I picked the flowers, I thought, “Wow! God is so romantic!” The beauty of the wildflowers nearly swept me off my feet. Then I looked across the pond below me and the sun glinting off the water looked like millions of diamonds that seemed to shout, “You asked for romance. How is this for romance?” Again, I felt swept away by the beauty of God’s creation. The sweet melody of the finches’ song resounding from the treetops above me became a love song from my Heavenly Father. The original creator of romance opened my eyes to the beauty all around me. I thought of how the Bible is like a beautifully written letter filled with poems of love. I've never been the same since that day! God gave me a new perspective on things and a new attitude about what true romance really is. I had been so busy dwelling on what I didn't have all those years that I missed the romance all around me. I was doing exactly what the old country music song lyrics said, I was looking for love in all the wrong places!

I no longer dread Valentines day. It's a day when I celebrate the ultimate romance! It's a day I reflect a little more on how much my Heavenly Father loves me and how much more I've grown to love Him over the years. I wouldn't trade the intimacy I have with Him for anything, and I'm thrilled with the romance He brings to my life every single day. Reading His word each morning is like opening a personal love letter, and I'm reminded of how much He loves me. Since I'm allowing Him to meet my need for romance, I can with all honesty say I am happy for the women in my life who share with me the romantic things their husbands and boyfriends do for them and I feel it's a wonderful thing. After all, God did create romance. If you have any doubts, just read Song of Songs in your Bible.

Today, as we celebrate Valentines day my mind once again swirls with romantic thoughts. My heart thrills and I'm filled with joy as I recall the miracle of a springtime walk through the woods many years ago; a walk that would forever change my life; a walk where the creator of romance was revealed to my desperate and longing heart.

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