One would assume only singles struggle with the issue of loneliness while married couples live happily ever after. But that’s not true. Loneliness can permeate even in relationships.
I remember a time in my marriage where my wife and I asked each other this peculiar question: “Why do you love me?” We were genuinely curious about what we thought about each other.
Yet, this unassuming question cast a shadow of doubt in our lives. I mean, how could there be no reason for love? How could unconditional love be possible? Not that I have a wealth of experience from my first year of marriage, but I’ve come to learn that I’ve perhaps gotten the question wrong.
Jesus Himself never asked why. Neither did He say why.
When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?” “Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.” (John 21:15)
I do not claim to understand love, neither am I any expert or known for being particularly loving. But I do know that when I start to ask for reasons – “Why do you love me?” – it draws me into disbelief and reflects an insidious doubt of my own worthiness. A love that has a reason is a love that’s deserved.
When I ask my wife why would she loved me, I had already cast doubt, not of her love, but my worthiness of such love. Doubt can be such a drama queen; it builds stories that make sense yet are untrue.
“Why does she love me?”
“Perhaps I should protect myself from hurt.”
“Maybe I’ll keep my distance.”
“It’s my right to love and be loved.”
The world decays as it seeks to understand love through self-serving and misguided lenses. At humanity’s core is this desire to be loved, yet its equally natural inclination to doubt will always prove it unworthy. It’s the loneliest place to be.
This vicious cycle is indeed complicated, but the solution to it really isn’t.
When I think I deserve a certain kind of love or believe that love must have a reason – I limit the kind of love Jesus gave His life for. We become robbers of our own delight, darkness to our own light. But that needn’t be.
“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:6-8)
Our willingness to accept this great love we don’t deserve purifies our soul; it gives us a chance to rise again and be righteous in the eyes of the Lord. Because He ultimately wants our souls to be in his Kingdom, He gave us Himself – body and Spirit.
I hope you’ll come to know the love of Jesus for you above anything this world’s wisdom may want you to believe. That with no rhyme or reason, you’ll find the capacity to be loved, and be compelled to love. So that others too may find the love they see in you – a love that is secure and at peace, that demands no condition or proof.
At the end of the day, I hope we’ll all find that love.
This piece was originally posted on Facebook and republished with permission.
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