Fall In Pt. 2 – Love in Real Life

[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNWEAt_WDBw’]

Don’t worry if we fall in love
We will never touch the ground
Don’t worry if we fall in love
We will never touch the ground
Just fall into a dream

They say
If you die in a dream
You die in real life
I just died in your arms
Lost in your eyes
And I know
This must be a dream
Cos I feel
Like I can fly to heaven

They say
If you live in a dream
You’re hopelessly lost
This ain’t just any old dream
For our paths have crossed
And I may be hopelessly lost
But somehow
I’ve managed to find heaven

Through some questions and discussions on this post on facebook and some other venues, I realize I want to clarify the point and go over some things about the initial post.

There is an important question lurking here. All of this talk about surrendering to joy and fate and “falling in love” in the sense of entering the rest of knowing you are with the person of your destiny and greatest dreams sounds GREAT! What if I don’t feel like that any more in my marriage? What if all I’ve got is dry commitment? Should I exit the relationship so I can find romance? It’s true, the dry husk of raw commitment really isn’t enough. Maybe real romance isn’t possible in my particular relationship. I’ve erred in the worst way with my life!

Of course you don’t feel like you have real romance in your marriage! You are a selfish sinning pig. So is your spouse. You both have ridiculously short-sighted and self-absorbed notions of what romance even is. You’re both horrible and awful, and you’re just barely able to hide it from everyone else and put on a facade of normalcy. I promise you that if you had married the genetic cross of Mother Teresa and Nicole Kidman (or the male equivalent if your are a woman), after three weeks of sharing the same bathroom, you would be at each other’s throats. As Paul Tripp’s book says in the title, WHAT DID YOU EXPECT? Even if you were married to Jesus you would still crucify Him, don’t think you’re any better than the rest of the human race! You yourself are incapable of sustaining romance, much less is your spouse able to be Jesus Christ for you. Here is a news flash: your spouse is not the sinless perfect Son of God. He/she never will be. You think you could possibly sustain a close relationship like marriage without grace and forgiveness for yourself and for your spouse? I think there is perhaps no such thing as commitment – there is persistent forgiveness. Our introduction by faith into grace (Romans 5:2) has opened the door to true romance, and has addressed the guilt we have in our closest relationships. It is not your spouse’s lack of romantic gesture that is killing your relationship. It is your own sin, and the guilt you continue to harbor, and the grace for yourself that you reject, that keeps you grasping at your significant other for a joy that they can’t produce. Because you feel unaccepted on account of the lack of magic in your relationship, you judge and continue to kill off the possibility of romance.

The demand for romance can actually be the most crushing and terrible law, judging you harshly for having badly missed the boat with the most important thing that could have happened in your life. What could possibly be a higher and more impossible standard than saying that you should sustain a magical level of joy and destiny in your life? How could that ever succeed for anyone? The command to love is the highest and most impossible law. Romance is the pinnacle of the law of the heart which condemns us.

The amazing thing isn’t that you are having trouble sustaining this fairy tale level of romance in your life. The amazing thing is that you are still able to directly and powerfully resonate with this fairy tale vision of love whenever you get the faintest whiff of it! In the midst of every possible attack on every level of society, every love song still celebrates a joyous union that lasts forever and conquers everything. When was the last time you heard a love song that said “I’ll love you until it becomes inconvenient and then I’ll dump your sorry ass?” I don’t have to argue for the veracity of the message of Esperanza’s song, we all know what love is and we all recognize true romance when we see it! We know human love involves falling into something wonderful that is much bigger than ourselves, a delicious surrender to joy. We all long for it more than anything else.

The entire point is that the pop culture vision of love which this song so exquisitely expresses ends up being an almost exactly perfect theology of the grace of God. It is crazy how spot on it is. When our own relationships lack this spark of mystery and joy, we ought to mourn; it is true that raw dry commitment cannot sustain us. However, I suspect that if we are looking to any human besides Christ Jesus Himself for this level of magic and life and wonder, we base our lives on mere facade and pretense. No one is as good as the marvelous persona they put forward in courtship. The only way that earthly romance between men and women can sustain is through forgiveness and forbearance. Thank God my exquisite wife understands this!

Our magical joy and forever after love is with Christ Jesus, because He is the One who has forever committed to us out of a hopelessly devoted desire to the point of self-sacrifice. Our earthly romance is only a dim shadow of this real love. There is none of the talk of dry commitment with Him. He really will come on His white horse and very truly sweep us off of our feet.

7 “Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”
8 And it was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
9 And he *said to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” And he *said to me, “These are true words of God.”
10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he *said to me, “Do not do that; I am a fellow servant of yours and your brethren who hold the testimony of Jesus; worship God. For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”
11 And I saw heaven opened; and behold, a white horse, and He who sat upon it is called Faithful and True; and in righteousness He judges and wages war.
12 And His eyes are a flame of fire, and upon His head are many diadems; and He has a name written upon Him which no one knows except Himself.
13 And He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood; and His name is called The Word of God.
(Revelation 19:7-13, NASB).

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