October 13, 2011

Spend Yourself {Day 12} :: Say "yes" to big love

This man in my life has been here all along. For the whole journey ... almost. And we discovered this Jesus together in all of our messed-up-ness. At least, we discovered something called grace and what it means to turn and walk out this life ... giving an answer to the One who asked, "Will you follow?"

I always knew I loved this boy who wooed me with perfect manners taught by a sweet mama. He opened doors (and still does) and he wrote notes. He was a gentleman and he was patient. He was kind and he spoke kind words and even when I was a brat, he never changed his tone. Not ever. He made big gestures and he drove long hours and he gave extravagant gifts.

I had a hard time learning to accept this big, over-the-top kind of love ... just didn't feel worthy. I was sure he would realize he had spent too much:

Too much time. Too much money. Too much energy.

"Could he be for real?" I wondered.

And we walked out this young-love life for five good years. with wrong turns and hard falls and about-faces. We weathered a season of growth and we watched,  astounded, as a change happened right in front of our eyes. We knew we had started on a journey and we knew we didn't have all the answers.

We knew just enough to keep moving forward, always together.

So when he stood with me out in the cold, all shivering and nervous, and asked me to stay on this road with him, for forever, I knew he needed a response. And I knew this man was trustworthy.

He was asking, "I have done all I know to show you this love. Can you go all in now? Can we?"

And in these ten years of together, he has continued to show love in big, extravagant ways. And I have said words like, "Can you not go so big, do so much?" I have tried to tone him down, make him think more practical, love on a smaller scale.

And he just doesn't listen.

Instead he says, "I love to love you this way. Just let me love you, ok Ab?"  And I am learning still that the only reasonable answer to give him is "ok" and "thank you."

Because to think too practical is to cheapen what he is offering. To stifle this love he gives is to reject it's fullness.

I can't outgive this man and that makes me crazy and insecure. We are simply not operating on the same gift-giving level, he and I.

And in the irony of this faith-life, every time I realize I can't go bigger, I remember there is another who gives lavish love. This man I love, with all his gifts, points me back to the Father ... over and over again. And it requires a certain amount of humility and surrender and faith to simply say, "thank you."

Do you have ears to hear?

Because when you discover just how committed someone can be, how far they are willing to go, what they are willing to give ... when you realize that just maybe this whole thing is no joke and that it really is for you, what other answer can there be?

Have you discovered this big love that seems too good? Totally impractical? Unbelieveable?
O ... to stop arguing with the giver and simply receive.

This is the gift.

We are on a journey these days ... a progression of sorts, to learn how to really spend these days. If you've missed out, I hope you'll go back ... scroll down and follow along from the beginning. Not because I write good stories. But because He does. Peace, friends.

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