Can I just be honest for a moment? I mean, let me put aside the titles, roles, and responsibilities and just share my truth real quick?
I am 33 years old and I am still single.
Oh, and I hate it.
As I look at my peers around me, most are married (whether it’s marriage one, two, or even three), parents to teens/pre-teens, or both. There are few who are like me- single, no kids, and not even a prospect. My heart aches as I look around and see the relational joy that they experience as I rush home to curl up on my couch with my journal and devotional book. It appears as though they lead such interesting lives in comparison to the routine boredom that is my life. I long for the exhaustion that comes from toting three kids to 17 different events on what should be a peaceful Saturday. I long to share that picture on social media of the mother trying to pee in peace as her children come barging into the bathroom. I long to get the macaroni noodle Mother’s Day card made by my precocious seven year old in her vain attempt to get me to forget that she forgot to clean up after our dog, Wednesday (yes, we named our dog after my favorite day of the week).
I long for these experiences.
I greatly desire these experiences.
I passionately pursue these experiences.
Let me pause here to say that I will be using the term “passionately pursue” in two different ways so please read carefully.
In my humanity I can’t wait for God (we said we are being honest, right?). Sometimes God just takes too long and I know that my way is quicker. Yes, God promised me many things but doesn’t He need my help in accomplishing them? I mean, James 2:17 does say that faith without works is dead, right? (PAUSE– please know that is NOT what James meant… read the entire passage for accurate context, forgiving my dramatic writing liberties.) So I’ll take my faith and couple it with my works and then I will have the promises of God- that’s how it works, right???
God is sovereign and He is fully able to accomplish His plans for our lives with no help from us at all. Our ego and impulsivity cause us to think that God needs our help. Beloved, let me save you a lot of time by repeating this: God does not need our help.
Yet even in knowing that, I still run myself ragged by passionately pursuing my heart’s desires.
I want that food, so I eat it.
I want that outfit, so I buy it.
I want that man, so I pursue him.
I want, so I take.
In doing that, I do not take into consideration what God had designed for my life. I push Him out of my life by choosing to live my life without Him. I fail to realize just how much God sacrificed to passionately pursue me. I pursue my heart’s desires but not the One who created my heart.
Think of your favorite love story. Two people meet, there is some trepidation, they accept their love for one another, something goes wrong, but in the end their love conquers all. From Danielle Steele to Hallmark, the story is the same. But still, picture your favorite story. Why do you love it so much? May I venture to say that you love it because of the pursuit that happens? No matter the actual storyline, there is a point in the story where one person actively pursues the other person until that person relents and allows the pursuer to love them. Viola! The chase is over and the love has been cemented.
Beloved, that is what God has been trying to do with us since the beginning of time! Dating back to Adam and Eve, God has been trying to have this intensely real and intimate relationship with us. He has been trying to let us see that with Him we have everything that we need AND if there is anything else that we may need along the way, He is ready to supply it. He has been pursuing us so deeply and passionately… but we have been pursuing other things.
Speaking for me personally, I pursue male love and attention. The greatest hurts that I ever experienced were from the hands of men who claimed to love me. Now as an adult, I still try to overcompensate for those past hurts by running into the arms of men. The only thing that has changed since my 20s is that now I don’t crave the physical attention, I pursue the emotional attention. But.. same thing. Whether physical or emotional, I am still pursuing a passion that is outside of the passionate pursuit that God is leading for me.
God created. We destroyed. God forgave. We sinned. God pursued. We ran. God sent His son to die for me. I ___. *Fill in the blank with what you have done.
As we step into the days leading up to Christmas I want to place one nugget in your heart. Jesus is the one and only true reason for this season… and He is the embodiment of God’s passionate pursuit for our hearts. Jesus’ birth is the fulfillment of the ultimate love story and God is still passionately pursuing our hearts. No matter what happens or doesn’t happen on this side, God is still extending His hand and love, waiting patiently to reunite with us and pour His love out all over us and our lives.
Beloved, I am…
Beloved, you are…
Beloved, we are…
The chase is over.