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With full abandon.

That’s how I long to love.

To rush forward passionately. Joyfully. Fearlessly.

Yet with fear is how I’ve always loved. Always afraid of love dying. Or moving on. Or fading away.

A little girl, terrified. My mother ten minutes late. Fearing the worst. She who I loved the most leaving me behind.

A young woman. First romance. Push. Pushing love away. A self-fulfilling prophecy.

Older. Getting my very own first dog. And still afraid to love too much. For the inevitable day will come. And she will go. So, I hold something back.

What do I give up if I love with full abandon? Do I give up a cage of my own making for true freedom?

What do I risk if I love completely?

Much.

I could get hurt. My loves will die, move on, fade away. And even more – they could hurt me. Lash out and do damage.

Yet.

What do I risk if I don’t love with complete passion? What will I miss out on? By tying love to conditions? By holding back in fear?

Steadfast love.

Again. And again the scriptures tell of God’s steadfast love for us. Despite our sin. Our absolute rejection of him. Worse – our replacement of Him with pale substitutes. And yet: love. Steadfast love. And if I am to be an example of His life and character and walk in imago dei… shouldn’t I embrace the love? With full abandon?

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18

Fear has to do with punishment. My fearful love is wrapped up in a reprimand I may deserve, but Jesus has redeemed me from.

Perfect love drives out all fear. All terror. All hesitation of intimacy. Perfect love opens us to a grace too beautiful to imagine.

What have I been hiding myself from?

 

 

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