I'm not going anywhere

Repost from February 14 2015

It's Valentine's day this weekend.

I know this mainly because adverts and marketing emails keep badgering me to tell me what I should be buying for it. The daffodils have been hounded out of sight and replaced by row upon row of roses. If you're in a relationship you find yourself walking that tightrope between doing something that's naff and doing something that's ridiculously overpriced and commercialised.

I heard Tim Keller speak this week. He said that there are three different categories of close relationships:

- you can be loved but not fully known, which is superficial and unsatisfying
- you can be fully known but not loved which is terrifying and crippling and what we fear the most
- or you can be fully known and deeply loved. Which is what we know we need - deep down -  and which is life-changing. 

Whatever you're doing this weekend - take some time out to think about the third one.

If you're a Christian you have been loved on a scale and at a depth that has the power to change your life and to heal your heart. You have been.  There is someone who knows everything about you - the good, the horrifying, the disappointing, the mundane. There is someone who never forgets where you've been. Someone who knows it all already and has declared that they will never walk away from you.

I was really moved this week to read Matt Chandler's description of a difficult time in his marriage. He recounts how he was being calculatedly cruel and verbally abusive to his wife - trying his hardest to wound her. She responded by wrapping her arms around him and saying: "I don't know what happened to you, but I'm not going anywhere."

God has the same stance of fierce, unwavering commitment to us. Commitment that is deeply personal and costly. Maybe you don't feel as close to God as you'd like today. Maybe you'd confused about what he is doing in your life - maybe you're really aware of how your doubts and your sin distance you from him.

Take time to recognise that his forgiveness, acceptance and love beggar every single human demonstration of love. They beggar even every single imagining of it. He is the real deal.

Know that he is always the one who comes towards us, pulls us into his embrace and promises that he's staying.

He's staying.

(And check out this excellent video by Glen Scrivener: Be Loved)


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