February 14th is a day that is anticipated, and often dreaded, by many women, both married and single. The glory placed on the materialism of the day often overshadows the beauty of deep, abiding, perfect love. Store entrances overflow with chocolates and flowers and the waiting time at restaurants is doubled. For twenty-two years of my life, I never had a Valentine (other than my sweet dad who graciously took on that role). I never received the fancy chocolates, never was surprised with a dozen roses, and never was taken out on a Valentine’s Day date.
That list of never’s grew to make me “never” want Valentine’s Day to come around. Each year when Valentine’s Day would come around, I would write a letter to my future husband, seal it, and place it in a special box. Starting in the 7th grade, I began writing letters to my future husband.
Longing for Something More
The pile grew over the years and each letter I wrote was filled with longing and often covered in tears mixed with hope. Psalm 56:8 tells us that God holds our tears in a bottle. He might use a bathtub to hold the amount I have cried over my lifetime. My heart ached for a husband to call my forever valentine. It wasn’t until college that I fully realized that my longing for love could only be met in Jesus. The love letters I would write to my husband began to change into love letters to the Lord.
The more I began to look to Christ for contentment, the fuller life became, even in singleness.
God's Love Letter
The Bible is the story of a God who doesn’t need us or anything from us, but still seeks a relationship with us. The Bible is one giant love letter to us: written in blood, united in love, and with the most glorious ending. No fairy tale could ever rival the work of art God has written in his Word. “Once upon a time” begins in the creation account and the garden of Eden. The most heroic act of love is displayed in the Gospels when Jesus laid down his life for those who had rejected him. And “happily ever after” is yet to come.
We will be with Jesus forever, worshipping Him, adoring Him, and basking in His perfect presence. There will be no more tears that fill up bottles and bathtubs. Our minds can’t even begin to imagine how incredible this “happily ever after” is going to be.
The love letters we write to one another will never compare to the Love Letter God wrote to us. He woos us through creation. The heavens declare his glory. (Psalm 19:1) Those intricate details in a flower speak of his creative and thoughtful love. Each majestic mountain proclaims his power. The fresh morning dew on the grass whispers his mercy. The array of colors in a sunset sings his praises. Even the variety of fruit God created tastes of his sweetness. God is displaying his love through creation every day.
His love goes deeper than a box of chocolates and bouquet of roses.
The unending love of God sent Jesus to die on a cross. There has never been a more heroic and loving act displayed in all of history. Jesus is the perfect Prince Charming. He is everything we could ever need or long for in a love story. He is the cord that holds all things together in the universe, your life, and your love story.
When I got married, I made a promise to myself to never forget the aches I felt in singleness and to never replace Jesus with my husband. I’ve learned that even in marriage, the holes in our hearts don’t disappear. If anything, marriage has taught me in a fuller way that Christ truly meets my deepest needs for love and acceptance. He soothes the aches, mends the hurts, and awes us with his grace. No husband, no boyfriend, and no man could ever meet those needs. Only Jesus Christ can.
Don’t miss the romance of today by looking at flowers that will fade and chocolates that go bad. God is wooing you. He is calling you by your name. Whether you’re married or single, divorced or dating, God’s love is unchanging. His grace is never-ending. He longs to meet with you and fill that hole in your heart with the love only he can give.
Open your Love Letter today. He is reaching out to you with the most tender arms, offering abundant life and perfect love.
You are already in the middle of the greatest love story ever made.
Gretchen, I always love reading your love story. The way you wait on the Lord in every circumstance is truly inspiring. I have been reading your blog for years now, and am constantly touched by your heart for God and consistently reminded to abide in Him alone.
The truth that He holds all things together and that He holds my life together is what I needed reminded of right now. Thank you Gretchen!
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