Love that Knows No Bounds

A reminder that tomorrow we will commit to praying and fasting for God to bring marriage to those of us who desire it, to strengthen both men and women in their personal and relational lives, and to bring change within our hearts, minds, and spirits. 

This morning I spent some time reflecting on the past few months:  What life looks like, where I am with God, where I am emotionally, etc.  It was appropriate timing considering I haven’t written for a few months and want to bring my most authentic self to the table.

As I sat in silence I was overwhelmed with the recognition of rich blessing:  healing in the life of a certain family member I’ve been praying for daily, a season of professional growth, a new and surprising sense of confidence in myself and who God has created me to be, along with less anxiety and fear than I typically experience.  Things are good.  (And of course along with this realization I find myself tiptoeing around carefully, wondering when it will all blow away).

Next to this goodness sits my dating life, something I can only describe as an utter mystery that includes elements of both tragedy and comedy.  I have endured some spectacular flameouts this summer.  Consider the guy I went out with four times and was growing attached to, only to have him abruptly call and say, “I’ve met someone else and really want to pursue her.  Sorry.”  Or the guy from Oregon who rode his Harley to San Francisco to meet me for a day in the city, only to later ride off into the sunset (literally) and never call again.

The thing I can’t explain is that in the midst of it all I have more resolve and motivation to keep going than ever before.  In the past, the above scenarios would deeply wound me and make me question my desirability or attractiveness, even my value.  It would take me a long time to put myself “out there” again.  But now, while I definitely feel the sting of rejection and the grief of losing yet another opportunity, I find myself refusing to let these events dictate my belief in myself and/or my efforts to meet someone wonderful.

So, while from one perspective my dating life might look like an exercise in chaos, from another I see it as further evidence of God’s blessing and movement for change in my heart.  The truth is that for much of my Christian life I’ve feared God’s disappointment rather than known his radical acceptance and love.  Now, with baby steps, I find that the times I intentionally meditate on God as lover versus judge, my own self-acceptance and confidence increases.  And that makes weathering the storms of so many aspects of life – not just dating and singleness – more tolerable.

It makes me wonder what our lives would be like if we could fully internalize the radical love and acceptance of Jesus.  No fear.  No judgment.  No disappointment.  No rejection.  No feelings of not being enough.  Just grace and acceptance for being who we are, exactly as we are.

I’m certain it would be absolutely transformational.

In that spirit, my prayer for all of us this week is that we “may have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, and how deep His love is.  May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully.  Then you will be made complete with all of the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”  (Ephesians 3:18-19, New Living Translation)

Many blessings,

Kirsten

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12 Responses to Love that Knows No Bounds

  1. Jennifer Erickson says:

    Wonderful Kirsten! and That (i.e.’the height and depth and riches..” of Christ’s love), is the best news of all. Thank you for sharing this. Jennifer

  2. Thanks for this great post Kirsetn. I think a lot of us can relate to this and I found a lot of truth in it. Keep up the great readings.

  3. Katy says:

    I can relate to this. Sometimes after bad dates/dating experiances, I would feel discouraged (not encouraged) from dating….My thoughts would always be: Lord, what was that for?

    I almost think it would be easier to not date until mr right comes along than have bad dates and relationships all the years leading up to marriage, but I am glad I had these experiances because atleast I am putting myself out there. You have to take risks and then one day you will take that risk and the guy will be worth it.

    I have some friends that rarely date or put themselves out there. They may get hurt less than I do, but they also don’t seem to be any closer to meeting their husbands. I know God is in control of these things but He uses our choices so I certainly hope that Mr. Right is out there taking risks and being dissapointed to, so that maybe He will still be looking when I come along!

    Praying you have some better ending dates — or should I say, not ending dating relationships 😉 – in the next few months!

    • Amy says:

      I certainly won’t pretend to know your friends’ situations, but some of them may not be dating much–but not by choice. I haven’t been on a date in 2 months, despite actively trying to engage several guys in conversation on online dating sites, etc. I’m putting myself about as out there as I can think to be while still maintaining my sanity and regular life, but dating just doesn’t seem to be what God wants me to be doing right now. I find that as, or almost more frustrating, than times where I have gone on some dates with different men that have flamed out (in similar fashion to those mentioned in the original post).

    • fast. pray. says:

      Hi Katy,
      Thank you for your comments! My heart and head have had all of these considerations too. I think it is important to be proactive in the ways we can and rest when we need to, all the while making sure we’re leaning into the perfect guidance of the Holy Spirit. Praying for your journey too.
      – Kirsten

  4. Thank you Kristen…you wrote my story here..Thank you for reminding me of the unstoppable, never ending, everlasting, eternal love of God.

  5. Lynn says:

    Thank you for this post. It’s good that you retain your hope. My dating experiences have left me completely discouraged. I have thrown in the towel.

    • fast. pray. says:

      Hi Lynn,
      Thanks for your honesty. I have been where you are, and even though right now I’m in a more hopeful place, I still know the discouragement that comes from unmet expectations and desire. Sometimes throwing in the towel is where our minds need to go before hope can find its way in. I will be keeping you in prayer tomorrow, that God’s presence would comfort you in this part of your life.

      – Kirsten

  6. annaimagines says:

    Thank you Kristen for sharing your journey. I can relate to so much of what you spoke of. Thank you for reminding us of the unfathomable, unstoppable, love of Christ. Sometimes, I forget this fact and it is my wish, my prayer and deepest desire to know and experience His awesome presence more each day.

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