"You see the depths of my heart and you love me the same..."
As I sang those words in worship this past Sunday, it struck a chord in my heart. I have been forced to face some pretty nasty things about myself lately...Things I knew were there, but didn't want to own up to...make them mine. How could anyone love something so unlovely, let alone the God of all the universe? But it would seem that He does, so I take this on faith sometimes...literally. Because it is really so unbelievable.
What is this thing in us that needs to be loved? I am finding it so much easier to "love" people in general...from afar...than to really get down in all their trash and love them through it. Case in point:
My brother. He turned 40 in April and just moved out of my parents' house for what seems like the hundreth time. My husband, the pshycology student, says Sam has what they call "arrested development". A person reaches a certain stage and their development is stunted, for whatever reason. This completely makes sense to me. Though my issues with my father are painful, Sam's have got to be a thousand times worse. Sam lives his life looking for love and acceptance wherever he can find it. And if he can't find it, he tries to drown the ache he has inside for it. He cannot keep a job and all the neccessities a person needs to survive. He has been in and out of jail numerous times for many different reasons. My parents have tried helping him and the outcome is the same. Everyone's heart is broken in the end. My family's reaction to this has been to shun him. Don't let him come too close because we don't like who he has become. "He must want to be this way, " is what they say. "He doesn't want to change." So, we pretend there is no Sam until he ends up at the Salvation Army or calls from jail. Then the drama begins again.
I love my brother. And I am learning to love him more. My initial reaction has been to follow my family's lead...it's much less painful. But my husband pointed something out to me a while ago. If we turn our back on him, what does that say to him about God? And now I cannot turn away. He and I are one of the same. We just want to be loved. I experienced firsthand this morning that a little love can go a long way. A kiss from my sweet husband made me feel as though I could face my day and conquer all challenges. Imagine what God's infinite, merciful, all-inclusive love can do for a hungry soul. God, please give me that kind of love and a heart that shares it without hesitation or question. I long to love.