I have this friend who, while I haven’t known him all that long, I know is a very dear man. Recently he met and then started dating a girl I don’t know first-hand at all. But I have heard about her through various different trusted sources, and I’ve also heard about her family. All of it is good news. By every account this girl and her family are kind, loving and true people. So it makes me very happy for my friend as I have watched him walk out the door on his first meeting with her and then in subsequent conversations we’ve had about her since then.
I have been honored to have my friend ask me, a married lady, for advice and insight as he’s pondered this relationship, and I am so touched by the care that he’s using as he approaches this whole thing. I am touched, too, by the careful and respectful boundaries they are setting for one another, within which they hope to continue getting to know each other and finding out God’s will for this budding relationship of thiers.
And you know, it strikes me, that in seeing this happen I sense more out and out romance than just about anything I have ever seen before. It isn’t lines crossed and passions out of control like we see so much in our culture lauded as true romance. No, instead I am seeing this man utterly concerned with showing how wonderful he thinks this girl is by handling her as though she is precious and to be protected — and he’s doing it not only out of his admiration for her, but also his desire to honor his Savior.
I won’t go on. I don’t want to embarrass my friend should he ever run accross this blog. But really, it’s brought me so much joy considering his good intentions toward this girl today and it has inspired in me a desire to cover and protect them with prayer as they start out on what could be a lifelong journey.
But it brings to mind the quote from Lewis that helped me title this blog:
“Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
I guess that’s some of what makes this all so deep and lovely. He isn’t aiming for what the world is telling him would be enough to be labeled “true love.” He’s hoping according to a different standard and that makes his aim more true.
Poorly written tonight, my friends. But completely sincere.