Written by:
Caitlin Hankins

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Learning to Fall in Love with God First

“If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.” - 1 Corinthians 13: 1-3

We all want to be loved - it is the desire of every person’s heart to be pursued by another and to be loved unconditionally. I had my first crush in preschool, and I remember chasing him around the playground to be with him, because I liked him so much. Since I was in high school, I’ve had a Pinterest board planning out my dream wedding. The only problem is that I have no one to share those plans with. Sure, I’ve had feelings toward boys since my preschool crush, but there is this reoccurring thing of it not working out with them.

It doesn’t matter if I tell myself, or my friends for that matter, how much I like someone if he is not pursuing a "perfect love."

In church this past Sunday, my pastor talked about how we had to be connected to the one who is perfect and pure, before we can find the one who loves God more than us. It hit me like a bag of bricks, because after all this time I realized I hadn’t been doing that. Yeah, I go to church every Sunday, the college ministry at my school on Tuesdays, and small group Wednesday nights, but that wasn’t enough. It doesn’t matter if I tell myself, or my friends for that matter, how much I like someone if he is not pursuing a perfect love that is pure, patient, kind, never envious, and never proud. If a person does not possess a love from God above, then it will never work out. There is no such thing as a perfect person, only a person pursuing the perfect one.

Things get tough and life gets hard, no matter who you are with.

I am going to be blunt with you when I say, it does not matter how perfect someone’s smile may be, how well they may dress, or how great they look in that outfit - looks fade. Things get tough and life gets hard, no matter who you are with. You are going to have bad days and so is your significant other, but you can only learn how to love them on their worst days with God and his word. Successful relationships are not merely a two-way affair – they exist between you, your significant other, and God. Our first love needs to be God, the one who formed you and brought you into this world to show love as he has first loved us. Only when we fall in love with God will we be able to find the kind of person God desires for us to be with.

Discussion Question: How is the love I am pursuing, or have been, different than the love that is talked about in 1 Corinthians 13? What can I do to make it the love like God has shown us?