Thirty-Three

What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray?
— Matthew 18:12 (ESV)
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Birthday ruminations through song.

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"Before I spoke a word, You were singing over me. 

You have been so, so good to me. 

Before I took a breath, You breathed Your life in me. 

You have been so, so kind to me."

Last Sunday at church, it finally dawned on me that turning another year older was only a couple of days away.

"Crap! 33?," I ask myself. A warm sensation starts growing beneath my hands and breathing is hard. "I feel... behind,"  I whisper.

A distinct, piano melody immediately resonates throughout the whole gathering. "Before I spoke a word, you were singing over me," the worship leader hauntingly sings.

God had something to remind me.

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"When I was Your foe, still Your love fought for me. 

You have been so, so good to me. 

When I felt no worth, You paid it all for me. 

You have been so, so kind to me."

 

At 27, I fought off God's love. Divorced from a covenant founded by fear and manipulation, I wanted to find success in a relationship my way. I surrendered to a new-found love thinking that it was my chance to redeem wasted years from a failed marriage. According to my calendar, I am supposed to have a growing, thriving family before 30.

At 28, my Mama Bebot passed and grief turned this new relationship into my only salvation. Someone said that no one is safe from the gods we create for they eventually turn on us. Well, he did. And I fought God. I fought for my new gods- him, hopes of re-marriage, grief.

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"There’s no shadow You won’t light up, 

Mountain You won’t climb up, 

Coming after me. 

There’s no wall You won’t kick down, 

Lie You won’t tear down, 

Coming after me."

 

I was thinking and with all do respect, God's love is somewhat ridiculous. Then I thought- have I ever loved like how God loves?

The closest experience of loving like God was loving the gods I made with my own hands. And I fell for these new gods intensely like how God's love has always been for me- RECKLESS.

I would have done anything and everything for him and the hopes to be married again. Only for a chance to be healed from my losses. Instilled principles of how I am supposed to be loved and how a woman ought to be treated turned to ashes. Love with him was shaped around lust producing false promises and false hopes; boundless compromises I am still ashamed of 'til this day. Yet the love that I was willing to give was never enough, for the both of us. My love for him was reckless- but with conditions. I was saved by Divine intervention- eventually getting tired of never being enough.

My love for him stopped when I couldn't get the same love in return.

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"Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God! 

Oh, it chases me down, fights ‘til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine. 

I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, still You give Yourself away. 

Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God!"

Pain forces us to look for love desperately. Or in my case, pain might cause us to turn our backs on real love. 

God's reckless love for me is a different kind of reckless. He doesn’t wonder what He’ll gain or lose by putting Himself out there. He NEVER expects to be loved in return, simply hoping that in His chase after me, I might look back at Him and offer myself willingly. And if I don't, He just loves again and again, and keeps on loving, again and again. He is not intimidated by my unbeliefs, my doubts, and my undeserving-of-love tendencies. Unlike human love, His love is no way practical. It knows no length and width, nor height and depth. His love for me purely does not know how or when to stop.

I turn 33 today and I had a waaayyy different picture in mind of where I would be in life at this age. I don't know if I'll ever arrive or have it all figure out. But I think setting my feet on a ground of Love that will unfailingly leave the 99 just to find me is a good ground to rest on at 33.

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 I'M GERRY. 

 

Thirty-three and loved recklessly.


Reckless Love, written by Cory Asbury

LifeGerry Passion8 Comments