I have spent the last 20 years of my life engaged in risky behavior – this Wednesday will be my 20th wedding anniversary. It will be my wife, Jan’s anniversary as well (funny how that works). I love my wife and I’m looking forward to celebrating with her. But honestly, this has been the most dangerous time of my life.
That’s the way it is with love and developing a close relationship – it’s risky. In order to love fully you must reveal yourself deeply. In order to grow together as the “one” God has joined you into being you have to leave much behind. Many these days will balk at such words. “Love should not ask us to give up who we are or what we like to do!” they cry. And yet I have been looking into the life of Peter who , along with is brother Andrew, and friends James and John gave up his successful fishing business to be with Jesus. The quest of God’s love called on him to give up who he was (and by doing so, it allowed him to give himself fully to Jesus).
Jesus one other time said that there is no greater love than anyone has than to LAY DOWN THEIR LIFE for a friend – to love is to give up your very life. For 20 years now I have had to make the choice to give up what I thought I wanted in order to get what I believed was even greater and more precious – a deeper relationship with Jan. It’s risky business this love stuff. What if it doesn’t pay off?
Well, I’m either a good gambler or I’m blessed. And since I have never won the lottery I say it must be the latter.
It all began 20 years ago in the Woodlands United Methodist Church. I still remember the moment when Jan came to the back of the church. As she stepped into the doorway she was in the shadows and then she stepped forward into the light. It was the most breath-taking moment of my life. It was the start of a risky endeavor that is paying great dividends. I hope you know the same kind of love in your life.
And, by the way, as great as the love is that I share with Jan, it does not compare to the love relationship I have with Jesus Christ. I wish that for you most of all,
Holy high five to you, Mike.