Hey, remember your first heartbreak? I do! I was hurt and could not imagine what my life was about to be like without this guy in it! We had been together for so long and our lives were so intertwined that weaving him out was going to be complicated. I could not conceive ever feeling happy or content again! My desire to be in a relationship was so strong that the thought of not having one was actually painful—emotionally and physically (my head and stomach hurt, for real).
Now, several years later, with a much higher IQ to work with, I see more clearly. The years and experiences that I’ve lived through have made a difference. Looking back, I realize that deep down my pain was rooted in the fear that I would always feel this bad. I could not deny that the relationship needed to end because there were aspects of it that kept me from being all that God wanted me to be. My fear, though, was that pain caused by the rejection, the sense of loss, and the embarrassment would never end. I just knew that I would ALWAYS miss him and the relationship. The reality was, the pain was temporary. I eventually stopped missing him and the relationship. All the things that that breakup required me to give up were eventually no longer desires of mine. I no longer wanted them. I gave up the talks on the phone, the date nights, the gift exchanges, the companionship, the title, and the perceived social status that came along with dating. All of it was gone. And I no longer wanted it.
My “want to” had been changed.
Perhaps I’m not alone. There are times, higher IQ and all, when we feel a sense of anxiety when first presented with an aspect of our lives or a connection to a person in our lives that is keeping us from being all that God wants us to be. That anxiety may be the brainchild of a belief that it will always feel like this or be like this. The anticipated pain stimulated by the shock, the rejection, the sense of loss, or the actual loss will last forever! So instead of making a healthy move, we decide, “never mind, I will pass! I will stay right here. I may be stunted but at least it’s familiar!”
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
All of it? That’s a lot! Yes, oftentimes we hesitate to fully embrace a godly lifestyle, and love Him with “all of it” because we know we will miss the things we anticipate having to give up. We imagine that being sold out for Christ is to stop this or stop that. Give up this or give up that. And that is hard because we want this and that. We don’t want to have to stop it or give it up. Whatever it may be, we want it! God is not about fencing us in and teasing us with treats we can’t have. How many times have we rebelled and jumped the fence to grab hold of the “treat,” only to find that the fence was actually guardrail designed by an omniscient God to protect us from a deadly fall?
Loving God with all your heart, mind, and soul is just that: loving Him. It’s not about a list of do’s and don’ts, climbing into cages and being limited by fences. Loving God means to choose to factor Him in. It means you consider His viewpoint on a matter by reading His word, praying, listening, and seeking Godly counsel. It is through this process that God can and will change our want to, freeing us up to be all that He has called us to be. It’s about choosing to get to know who He is. The more we learn about Him, the more we love Him. The more we love Him, the more we hate anything that opposes Him.
The next time we are challenged to let go of something or someone in order that we may experience more of Him, let’s love Him with “all of it” as we push past the anticipated cravings for that which we are giving up in order that we may eventually find ourselves on the other side of that situation. We could then look at an invitation to go back, cling to our sweet, fulfilling, peace-provoking victory, and say “no thank you!” as we realize that He has changed our want to!