What Does It Mean to Love Well?

How Do I Love Well?
How Do I Love Well?

Valentine’s Day was yesterday. My blog about love is late. Still here it is.

How Do I Love Well?

When I think about love, I begin with giving God thanks for the “second chance” at loving God has given me with Tom. Every night and every morning, we give God thanks for bringing us together and teaching us how to love well.

What does it mean to love well?

Very early in our relationship, Tom started calling me his “Just Right Jan,” just right for him. I am amazed at the joy and the safety I draw from knowing I am loved just as I am. Too many of us, whether we mean to or not, give our loved ones the message that love will come only after they have grown and changed. Often, I’ve heard statements like, “No matter what I did, in my father’s eyes it was never good enough.” Or “My wife was never satisfied with who I am.” To be just right for Tom, even as I’m learning and growing, is a wonderful gift.

I think that’s how God is able to give us a first and second and fifth and one hundredth chance. God must think we are “just right” the way God created us. God loves us just as we are, and loves us as we learn and grow. We sing the old hymn, “Just as I am, I come,” and feel joy and safety fill our hearts.

I’ve been reading the story of Jonah and the whale in the Bible. It’s a story of second chances. I’m sure God could have given up on both Jonah and the Ninevites, but God persists. God loves all of God’s creation.

This Valentine’s Day, let your mind slip over the people you love. Let go of your expectations. Let go of waiting for them to be…whatever. Let yourself love them just as they are.

Please read the whole story of Jonah or at least chapters 3 & 4.

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