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What Love Really Is... (Part 2)

The Bible identifies the greatest commandment as being to love God. Love always involves trust. Ironically, the Bible is also packed with passages to tell us to trust God. Obviously, love and trust go together. When we know we are loved, we also know that the one loving us would never hurt us intentionally. We are safe both physically and emotionally with one who loves us.

In thinking about love and trust, I recall when God led me to recall the dark chapter in my life when my daughter was only a toddler and was fighting for her life. Cancer was eating her insides and destroying everything in its path. For those years of my life, I was the sole person that was taking my daughter to every medical procedure, treatment, test, and surgery. Painful and frightening as each might be, I was determined to be with her and even took her to endure such. Thus, I was the one making all of it happen to her.

As I realized this, I wondered, “Why did she trust me”. There is no way for her to understand why I was causing such painful events being done to her. And yet, she trusted me. She still knew I loved her and she loved me.

God wants us to trust Him like that. Like my daughter, He wants us to trust Him even though we don’t understand why He allows and even sometimes leads us to painful experiences. I want to trust God like that. I want to know God loves me and I want to love Him, no matter what pain I experience.

My friend Jane, not only didn’t trust her mother, she didn’t feel her mother loved her. She never felt protected by her and sure didn’t think she wouldn’t hurt her. In fact, her mother often hurt her with her words and actions.

Jane carried the hurt with her. Even now that Jane has grandchildren, the hurt hangs in the background of her mind and heart. She can’t understand a mother not protecting her children.

Jane’s mother may not have found what love is, but Jane sure did. She loves passionately, protectively, deeply, and unconditionally. She loves God like that.

Unlike her mother, Jane's love for her own daughter is so beautiful and makes me realize it goes hand in hand with her love of God. Her love for God empowers Jane to love with her whole being and that was how she loved her daughter.

As I have gotten to know Jane, I found out that she has never stopped loving God, but she has stopped trusting Him so wholeheartedly. How could she since her own precious daughter she loved so deeply, God had allowed to die in a tragic accident at only 17 a few years ago.

Jane has stopped trying to understand, but she is trying to rework what trust really means. Trust doesn’t mean God will protect those she loves in the way she always wants. Trust doesn’t mean He will keep all the bad and horrific events from happening. Trust somehow is not so simple, clean, and innocent. Trust sometimes is agonizing.

Is trust basically submission? Or is it just resigning to the truth that we can’t make God do it only the way we want, the way that doesn’t rip our heart out, or the way that always makes sense to us.

Jane has her love intact, but her trust is a little shaky. But with all said and done, her trust is sound in that she knows God is good, no matter the pain. Jane knows God loves her and she loves Him. Jane is my clear example of what love really is.


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