That darling girl to the right is our older daughter, Trina. She's amazing. I've never known anyone who loves like she loves. She gives everything she's got. Consequently, when she's hurt, I've never seen anyone hurt like she hurts. But here's the amazing thing. She loves again – and again – and again. She keeps giving love even though she knows it’s going to hurt. Now, she's only 23, so perhaps she'll get hardened by life's hard knocks and stop giving her heart with such abandon. But I hope not. It's one of the most godly things I've ever seen anyone do. Yep, that's right. It's godly to give our hearts with abandon. Think about it...
God knows everything, right? He knows tomorrow’s events today. So when King Solomon messed up, and God decided to give 10 of the 12 tribes of Israel to a guy named Jeroboam, God knew that guy was going to end up the worst king in history. So why give him the 10 tribes?
But God said to Jeroboam, “Come on, buddy, you can do it!”
1 Kings 11:37-38 – “…I will take you, and you will rule over all that your heart desires; you will be king over Israel. 38If you do whatever I command you and walk in my ways…I will be with you. I will build you a dynasty as enduring as the one I built for David and will give Israel to you.”
It sounded like God really had high hopes for old Jeroboam. But when he messed up, whew! God’s high hopes turned to deep vengeance!
1 Kings 14:8-10 – “I tore the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you, but…9You have done more evil than all who lived before you. You have made for yourself other gods…you have provoked me to anger and thrust me behind your back. 10Because of this, I am going to bring disaster on the house of Jeroboam. I will cut off from Jeroboam every last male in Israel--slave or free. I will burn up the house of Jeroboam as one burns dung, until it is all gone.”
But God doesn’t hold back His love or His hope for us just because He knows we’ll disappoint Him.
- Creation – He knew Adam and Eve would eat the fruit and allow sin to mar his perfect creation, but He created anyway.
- The Law – He gave Moses the Law, knowing human beings couldn’t perfectly keep a set of rules, but He gave it in order to establish right from wrong.
- Jesus Christ – He sent His Son to earth, knowing He’d be rejected and killed, but He did it so that we could be eternally reconciled to Him.
So WHY keep setting ourselves up for disappointments?
It’s all about the journey – and the party at the end. Those friendships that hurt us so badly? Think of the joy they bring us along the way – and if they’re Christian friendships, think of the perfect eternity of joy they’ll bring later on.
(And if you’re a man, take a hint. Flowers are simply always a good idea.)