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A New Kinda Lov-er!

Romans 12:2b, “…let God transform you into a new person.”

Through many circumstances; bible studies, small groups, wise friendships, devotions, etc., this past year has been a year of Mandy’s changing heart. God has truly been teaching me a new way to love….

I, with my precious friend Cindy, am leading our youth girls in a book study called “When God writes your love story.” It’s a great book encouraging us to give God the pen to our romance….we trust God with lots of things…..Finances, health, careers, family, etc….but we often forget that God is the incredible author of romance as well. Why not trust him with our love life in addition to all those other things?

Throughout this year of many lessons on how to love my very best friend and husband Nathan….I have learned that real and true love boils down to this gold-trimmed lesson:

“Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, {I) should humbly be moved to treat {Nathan} as more important than {myself}. {That I} should be concerned not only about {my} own interests, but about the interests of {Nathan} as well.” Philippians 2:3-4 emphasis added.

I will admit I struggle with this! In fact I’ll also admit I’m TERRIBLE at it. It is an incredibly difficult battle with human nature (and our tendency to choose selfishness over selflessness) to put someone else’s needs before your own. It takes a great deal of vulnerability and compromise and most certainly the grace of our Lord! But it is absolutely what we are being asked to do.

Our culture does not support this way of loving. Culture instead implies that love is a feeling that is fleeting. You fall in, you fall out; and that’s ok. It’s not something that needs work- it should just ‘happen’. True God-ordained love is actually quite contrary to our culture’s belief on love:

First of all, love is not a feeling. It is a choice. Attraction is certainly a part of falling in love, chemistry between two people is absolutely the icing on the cake. But those things fade if we don’t have a foundation laid firmly to support and strengthen them. We must choose to love; an unconditional kind of love. A love that says ‘although sometimes you may hurt me, sometimes you may fail me, sometimes life might be a lot less than perfect but I will still choose to love you anyway.’
Isn’t that how Christ loves us? We sin against him every single day- yet his mercies are new every morning. (Lamentations 3:22-23 It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions do not fail. They are new every morning: great is his faithfulness.)
And doesn’t he ask us to love one another as he loves us? (John 13:34-35 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”)

Second of all, people fall in and fall out because there is a complete disregard to that gold-trimmed lesson I mentioned above. You know…Philippians 2:3-4?! Remember that one? Putting your spouse before yourself?! It’s hard to do; I get that. But, if you want to make it work it’s absolutely necessary. Living life for yourself is no longer gratifying, it’s a hindrance.

And lastly love absolutely takes work. It certainly does not just happen! While dating we tend to go out of our way to love on that special guy/girl! We then expect marriage to take care of itself; we have already won the prize, what’s left to work for?
EVERYTHING!
Think about it, how different would it be for our marriages if we treated our married life like our dating life? I think we’d be quite surprised by the outcome! Dating shouldn’t cease where marriage begins…it’s something that should continue on for our lifetime…don’t you think?

I am so thankful that God is showing me how to love. I am a work in progress that is for sure, but my heart absolutely wants to honour God and I am enjoying learning how to do that.

Thank you God for bringing my wonderful husband Nathan into my life! Thank you that I have found a true friend in him, someone to trust and love and live life with. Help me to be so very mindful to put his interests, wants and needs above my own. I pray that you will help me to love him with a love that is unconditional; the very kind of love you love us with. Go before us and cancel all the enemies plans of de-railing this love that you have surely brought together. Please continue to bless and grow our marriage in a way that glorifies you. In Your name, Amen!!

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Posted by on April 8, 2013 in Christian

 

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