of First and Second Love

Come make war! On every other lover
Hedge me in! Come and build Your wall of fire…
Around my heart!

Let the fragrance of my worship steal Your heart!
Let the fragrance of my praise fill Your holy place!

Nothing’s better than Your presence
Oh, let me drink deep.
May my love be poured upon
Your head, Your hands, Your feet…

These are those songs I’ve been meditating for the past few days, and it’s making me feel so loved and be in love with the Lord more and more. I’m thankful to God for singers/songwriters like Rick Pino for inviting us to a higher level of worship, and making them so personal, intimate, martial, and prophetic.

Speaking of intimate… well, it’s the love month now. But the above set of lyrics got nothing to do with it. But it could be my counterattack (lol!) of love songs being sung by my 12yr-old sister.

I’m not here to create (or add) another lovey-dubby blog, or advise the readers about the joy of waiting for God’s will. See, I have actually read (or skimmed only interested stories or topics, haha) this one most famous book about Christian love when I was in high school. Before my older sister got married, she had also read that one, and another about courtship, and I told her I would borrow it after. (Three years later) Well, the book is helpful especially to those who’ve made dating as their foundation of long-term (or short-term) relationships, but, I can say not necessary to Filipinos like me. For us, courtship is no problem because it has been in our culture for more than I could remember (we can even read about it in our history books). The process of officially dating comes after courtship is done. Courtship is kind of a new thing to Westerners. So, to be taught by Western writers (with all due respect) about courtship is… odd. We are a bunch of conservative folks when it comes to expressing love, but I think people here are getting liberalized in their way of thinking, kind of an influence from abroad (Different cultures have different ways. Don’t get mad at me).

So much for that.

Love has been defined (and is flooding) on my Facebook news feed in terms of pick-up lines and mushy statuses. The worldly influence has made it vain and vague, sometimes making it simply Love is sex, and vice versa. Even this month has been made so a big deal, making couples so “fortunate”, and making singles explain why they are still, well, single (no, I’m not bitter! :P). The best definition of love is of course, God.

“We love Him because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19)

God is love. Love is God. Love is truth. God is truth. Without God, you cannot love. Without truth, you cannot really love. Without God, there is neither truth nor love. Without truth, you cannot be set free. Without love, you are still living in fear.

There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment, and [so] he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love [is not yet grown into love’s complete perfection]. (1 John 4:18, AMP)

The day of love is originally from the time that the LORD thought of creating the world; the time He thought how mankind would be saved from eternal separation from Him. Day of Love. Birth of Love.

Our first true love is God, and it does not just exist in slumbook questions and answers.

Henri Nouwen says, “The love that often leaves us doubtful, frustrated, angry, and resentful is the second love, that is to say, the affirmation, affection, sympathy, encouragement, and support that we receive from our parents, teachers, spouses, and friends.” A devotional post in Our Daily Bread by Dave McCasland says, “When we look for our worth and identity in human love, as wonderful as it can be, we’re headed for disappointment.

Personally I resolve to be intimate first to my Abba, my Father, before I can show passionate feelings to others.

We can love others because God showed us perfect and unconditional love first through His one and only Son, Jesus Christ. He is the embodiment of the Father’s love. Jesus is the way to the Father’s heart.

The radical good news is that the second love is only a broken reflection of the first love, and that the first love is offered to us by a God in whom there are no shadows. Jesus’ heart is the incarnation of the shadow-free first love of God.” (Nouwen)

The Lord is longing for us to reciprocate His unfailing love through accepting Jesus Christ in our hearts.

//

lyrics stated from Rick Pino’s songs: Come Make War, Fragrance of Worship, and This Is Why I Am Alive, respectively (from the albums The Narrow Road and Weapons of Warfare).

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