Love Does Not Rejoice…

RosesI remember the days when I used to despise Valentine’s Day… it was the worst idea for a holiday if there ever was one. Of course, anyone who has not love on a day meant to celebrate love would despise it for all it’s worth.  Yet, even now the festival of the great Saint Valentine is not one that I anxiously anticipate or prepare for weeks in advance.  Sure I thought about what I would do for my sweet husband to show him I care but it didn’t go far beyond that.  And I certainly didn’t get butterflies wondering about what today would bring.  Don’t get me wrong, I am immensely enjoying the Belgian chocolate truffles my dear husband got for me, and I equally love the beautiful flowers (aren’t they gorgeous?!!)  But outside of my cozy little home there are other versions of this infamous “Day of Love” going on that dampen any excitement I feel for the 14th of February.

I suppose I should just sit and enjoy my own truffles and my own family and not concern myself with what the rest of the world is doing… I would probably be happier for it anyway.  But the fact of the matter is I no longer have the luxury of tuning out the evil messages of society and Satan.  The messages that tell young girls they are not loved or appreciated unless they give up what should be protected and honored.  The voice that tells mothers to abandon their families to pursue happiness and fulfillment elsewhere.  The abominable lie to the scared, confused student that it would be better to kill her unborn child than to put her own future at risk.  The perverted culture that upholds and encourages divorce for no other reason than an emotional gap in the marriage.  I would love more than anything to ignore the media geared at young children encouraging romantic and physical relationships, or the Hollywood delusion that if two people are in a long-term committed relationship they should be living together regardless of marital status.

But honestly, I can’t ignore these things anymore.   I cannot turn a blind eye to these lies and abominations, because each and every one of them has hit too close to home for me to pretend that they don’t exist.  Each one of these lies and perversions has invaded the lives of people that I love and destroyed relationships, marriages, families and faith.  Not only are these ideas dangerous to our temporal familial and societal connections, but they endanger our very souls if left unchecked and unhindered.  Is it really loving to encourage and enable each other in sin?  I grant that it certainly is the easy thing to do, for now anyway.  But what about when that Great Day of Judgment finally arrives?  Will it be easier then?  To watch those same friends and family you affirmed in sin to reap the eternal penalty for their actions?  Something tells me it won’t be.

But Dalas! You say “God loves everybody and Jesus dies for ALL people’s sin!”  Of course He does and yes He DID!  So then does that mean we should allow sin to run rampant in our body, the very temple of God Himself?!  By no means!  We are dead to sin and we must cut it off.  If we don’t it will overtake us and destroy our faith.  You cannot have two masters… if you allow sin to reign as master over your life you will begin to hate your first True Love, Christ.  Left unchecked habitual, unrepentant sin leads to only one thing, the rejection of your First Master, God, for the sake of your new master, Satan.  No matter how you want to sugarcoat it or beat around the bush – the wages of sin is death.  Yes, Jesus died for your sin and the gift of God is eternal life in Christ our Lord.  But if Christ is no longer your Lord and your happiness, fulfillment, passion, lust, greed, hatred, choose your vice, they’re really all the same… if any of these things is allowed to become master over you, you are putting your very salvation at risk.  Because if Christ is not your Lord, then eternal life is not your inheritance.

I say this from a position of utmost humility, because I have myself allowed sin to become my master and lead me away from the pure waters of my baptism.  I have fallen prey to the lies of the culture, and I have suffered greatly for it.  God in His mercy has spared me from the darkness and despair I once experienced as I floundered in the mire of my own sin and selfishness, but He has not taken the thorn out of my side just yet.  As He has said, His grace is sufficient for me until that day where I will be free forever from the temptations and troubles of this life.  I no longer despair because I know I am His Child, and He has promised to strengthen and preserve me until that day.  But are you His Child?

Are you really?  If you are then you will repent.  You will turn from your sin and be broken by it – you will no longer chase fulfillment and pleasure at the expense of your family and the integrity of your own body.  Repent and rejoice in the forgiveness that Christ has provided for you.

I would love to just sit here and talk about my roses and truffles and how excited I am about the melting snow… but the people that I love are in danger, and I cannot in silence watch as so many that I love are being led down the affirming path to hell.  And I pray that my fellow Believers will also join with me today in affirming less and loving more.

“Love… does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.” 1 Corinthians 13

In Christ,
Dalas

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