On love and other deep stuff

I am a self-proclaimed hopeless romantic.  I simply adore love.  And someday (hopefully soon!) I don't just want to, I absolutely need to be swept off my feet.  Loved. Whisked away.  Pursued.  Courted. Cherished.

I used to treasure the idea that God had someone perfect for me out there.  I loved to dream that when He thought to create me, He also thought to create my perfect mate, designing a beautiful love story just for the two of us.  I think it helped give me hope each time I felt the ramifications of yet another broken promise of "forever" from a man who had absolutely no concept of what that word even meant.

To quote Eat, Pray, Love: "How many more different types of men can I keep trying to love and continue to fail?  Think of it this way: if you'd had ten serious traffic accidents in a row, wouldn't they eventually take your driver's license away?  Wouldn't you kind of want them to?"

And still, with every new (yet familiar) heartbreak, I would attempt to cheer myself back up, tell myself he simply wasn't "the one" God had planned for me, and Pollyanna my way into believing that my personal Prince Charming was out there somewhere...

That is, until one night in Peru when I crawled into my Australian friend Estelle's bed for some late-night girl talk, and we began having a discussion about soul mates. First of all, let me clarify: I do believe in soul mates. Just not in the way most other people do. You see, I believe a soulmate is one who can read your heart without you needing to explain it to them - sometimes even better than you can for yourself.

My soul is lucky enough to have two of the most beautiful mates in the universe.  These women inspire and challenge, protect and encourage me like none other. 

"People think a soulmate is your perfect fit.  And that's what everyone wants.  But a true soulmate is a mirror.  The person who shows you everything that's holding you back.  The person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.  A true soulmate is probably the most important person you'll ever meet.  Because they tear down the walls and smack you awake... Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and thank God for it." (Eat, Pray, Love...again)

So it isn't that I don't believe in soul mates.  It's just that I no longer believe the cast of characters for my love story was pre-programmed by my Creator prior to my creation, so that all I needed to do was find the "right" person and everything else would naturally and magically fall into place.  And I don't even wish that were the case anymore, either... although it does sound a heck of a lot easier and less painful than fumbling through vulnerability time and time again.

Because the truth is, guys,
love is always a choice. 

Even when you are madly, desperately, inconveniently, hopelessly and gloriously in love with someone, there will still be times when they drive you absolutely insane or inadvertently bruise your heart a little, and in those moments you must choose whether you will continue to love them or not.

This is the quote that sealed the deal for me.  I apologize I do not have a reference for it.  One of Estelle's Aussie friends posted it on Facebook, thus sparking our discussion and revolutionizing my outlook on love:

"God doesn't force people to love Him.  He hasn't predestined anyone to love Him.  Because He wants us to choose Him by ourselves, so that our love might be real.  So why do people believe that God has predestined for us to love one person?  Why would God force us to love 'the one perfect partner' if He won't force us to love Him?  In the same way God has given us the choice to love Him, He lets us choose who we love in life.  But He will be there to help us make a good choice."

And there you have it: I don't want someone to love me because they were programmed to do so.  I want him to love me because he recognizes something precious in my heart and chooses to value that.  Every day.  For the rest of his life.


Vanessa's Dad said…
I agree that love is a choice... a decision. And, we make the decision to love, or not, every day.

Ruby said…
Well said friend <3
Ruby said…
Well said friend <3