I finally cracked. I finally cried last night.
Cry is a light word, I definitely more like wept. For a long time.
The past few months I’ve been praying and praying that God would reveal to me His love, for I knew that somehow, in some way, I was missing it.
Being here, I haven’t felt very loved by God. And it took my friend asking me the same question I’d been asking myself for weeks for me to put it all together.
She asked me if I felt loved by God, to which I responded not really. I told her I had realized that I believed how much I was loved was dictated by how well I was fulfilling my function(s). (I knew this to be a lie.) She asked if I knew where I got that idea. That’s when it all flooded in.
I started piecing together memories built up over the years, some very distant, some only a few weeks in the past.
I remembered multiple times where I asked people very close to me to do something with me, and they responded no. They had more important things to do. I remember once specific incident in asking someone and when they responded no, I pleaded with them that it was my birthday. They just looked at me and walked away. From this my internal message was: people don’t genuinely, intrinsically want to spend time with you. You’re not worth that much. People need a good reason to spend time with you.
I remember people in my past gossiping once I had become sick and asking how anyone could ever want to marry me, because they would be paying off medical bills for the rest of their lives. From that, I learned that I am a burden. And that the burdens I carry far outweigh any pleasure I could ever bring, or any worth I could ever hold.
I also learned growing up that performance is most important. And I learned through the perfectionists around me that even though I tried hard, I could never do a good enough job. I always came up short.
Some reactions to my health situation told me that I need to push harder. That I can’t slack off. That being sick or not feeling well is never a good enough excuse to “be lazy”. Rest is for the weak. Those who don’t strive till their last breath are unworthy of the Kingdom. Because of that, after I slept in the other day due to feeling sick, I found myself repenting for my irresponsibility. It was physically possible for me to walk and to talk. Therefore, there was not one good reason why I should have allowed myself to be so incredibly irresponsible and lazy. My performance wasn’t enough. I was being disobedient to the purpose of my trip. I was making mistakes and wasting time.
Because my worth is relatively average/low, and the burdens I carry are high, I had a sad reaction to watching the movie Finding Dory. In the film, Dory, who struggles with short-term memory loss (a big burden to others), is looking for her long lost family. In one scene, she questions whether her parents would really want to see her. My reaction was: No. How could they? I saw myself in her. I saw how I was a huge burden on those around me and how I could not fulfill my function, as a good human being should. I have low productivity. Therefore, there is no sufficient reason for someone to spend much energy caring for me. My greatest (honest) guess was that they would be mildly pleased.
In the other movie we saw here, three men were forced to undergo a lot of difficulties for the woman they each loved. To me, it was incredulous. I could not understand why they would have gone through so much. To me, I could not fathom a man going through that much just to be with me. I’m not worth it! Please - don’t!
Because of all these lies, I always catch myself before dreaming too great about God’s love for me. Sometimes I imagine Him being with me while I do some activity or another, but I have to immediately stop dreaming. Unless I’m sharing the goods or doing something I deem as spiritually productive, like reading the Text or praying, there’s no reason for Him to ‘waste’ His time with me. He is GOD for crying out loud, He definitely has way more important things to do.
So, my top love language being quality time, I did not ever dream I could experience God’s love that much. Furthermore, I’ve never been able to comprehend why God would ever love me to begin with. There’s NO REASON FOR HIM TO LOVE ME. Because of the lies I believe about love, my view of God concludes like this: Yes, He loves me. But He doesn’t like me very much, or want to spend time with me, or want me anymore than that foundational, generic love.
So, in my own conclusion, I am unworthy of much love. Because I don’t have a lot of worth, there’s no reason to love me or want me around much extra. I don’t fulfill my function. I am disobedient and a disappointment.
Because of these lies, I desperately desire control over my desires and emotions, esp. in love. I cannot hope too much, I cannot expect much. I need to be independent and strong. Weakness and vulnerability emotionally or in my desires means heartbreaking disappointment.
This all has made being in South Asia on my m-work trip difficult. I cannot do what I was supposedly sent here to do. Dad’s deep and true delight in me amidst my inability is a concept unknown to me. I simply cannot comprehend it.
However, through those in my life here, I have been encouraged to bring my heartbreak and skewed view of God’s love, as well as my true, deepest desires to the throne of God. I beg my Father in Heaven to show me what His love is truly like. I plead with Him to reveal to me how “long and wide and high and deep is His love” (Eph. 3). I know it exists. People experience it. The Text talks about it. The cross proves it. But is a veil in place that keeps me from uninhibitedly seeing it.
Today in my discipleship meeting, I was explaining to my discipler how much I lovee playing the game Just Dance (after confessing all this about love). She looks at me and goes, “I bet Jesus would love to play Just Dance with you.”
That concept has run through my mind the rest of the day. God would want to spend that crazy, silly, “unproductive” time – with me? That’s what His delight is like in me? That’s what it means when He says He wants me, and loves me, and wants a relationship with me??
I have realized that I fall in love with people and I feel love in being fun, in laughing a lot, in being goofy, in addition to meditating on deep things and seeing people’s passion in life.
This is no different with God. If I am going to fall deeper in love with Jesus (which I so much want to!), I need to let Him pursue me in the ways He created me to enjoy the greatest! I need to trust Him when He says He DOES love me that much!
So tonight is Date Night with Dad. Instead of doing my usual of spending time in the Word and praying and thinking hard about Him, I decided to listen to the best dance songs I know and imagine dancing with Dad to these songs! It was SO great!!! We enjoyed the music and dancing like crazies together. He’s not afraid to be silly with/for me. That made me feel so pursued, so delighted in, and so worth loved.
Then I knew I needed to laugh with God. So I googled Who’s Line is it Anyway clips and watched them with Dad. We laughed so hard together. J
Yes, this is the stuff that I enjoy soo much. But this is also stuff He enjoys, things He created! He delights in me and spending this time with me more than I could ever hope or dream.
This is what I needed to see tonight in my date with Him.
I know continuing to grow in the knowledge and experience of God’s love will drastically change my life.
“What a man desires is unfailing love.” (Prov.).
This is what I was created for. Yes I am worth it, He tells me. Yes I am delightful in all that I am and all I am not. NO I am not a burden. I am not a mistake. I am not worth only what I can contribute. For God loved me way before I could “contribute” anything to Him.
Jesus, please continue to lavish your love over me; overwhelm me with how much You delight in me. I am desperate for it, after years of shutting You out.
"The your God is with you,