Love and Patience

John 14:16
"And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He may remain with you forever."

In my experience falling in love has never been easy.  Falling was the easy part, but the love part raised difficulties.  When I was single,  at times it use to bother me, especially when friends, family, and co-workers around me were finding their soul mates, happiness, and their forever.  I  began to better understand why waiting and patience is so important.

Love isn’t the feeling of just “knowing,” it’s a supernatural response to the work of the Holy Spirit.  It took a lot of growth and transformation in my life through the work of the Holy Spirit to fully grasp what love is and isn’t.  It takes two whole people to make relationships work and last.  Not two perfect people, but knowing who we are in Christ individually and allowing our lives to complement each other, not clash.  This was a very difficult concept for me to understand.  In past relationships I was the one who carried the weight; I was the strong one.  I fell hard and easily and thought it was love.  It’s only now that I realized growing in my relationship with God is where I’ll be able to understand what love really is and how it’s meant to be mutual and not one sided.  More importantly, I also began to realize when each of our identities are rooted in Christ and we fully embrace the work and transformation of the Holy Spirit, true love occurs naturally, not forcefully.  In reference to John 14:16 Jesus told his disciples that He would give me another helper who would be with me forever.  Jesus knew we couldn’t do anything on our own power and strength.  

With the Holy Spirit’s power in my life and relationships, I’ve learned to be gentler, patient, self-controlled, kind, faithful, and loving.  I’ve realized that apart from God, I can’t truly have a successful relationship.  I’ve settled a lot in my life and in past relationships for what was comfortable and what seemed right.  I’ve settled for the emotional and mental abusive relationships and the simulated relationships where all the perks of the relationship were there, but the commitment wasn’t.  I’ve had my heart and soul broken more times than I care to look back and reflect on, but I realized looking back, what was missing from each relationship was the Holy Spirit.  I can’t force others to love me unconditionally and forever and the only person who truly will is God himself.  The man I was meant to be with, if neither of our relationships with the Lord aren’t right then it affects everything.  We won’t have become whole persons and we won’t be complete in ourselves.

This was a hard truth for me to swallow, especially when I was single and none of my relationships had ever seemed to end on good terms.  This was a truth that God had been constantly reminding me of since last week.  He reminded me that apart from Him I can do NOTHING!  He HAD to be the center of any future relationships and I HAD to stay in His will if I wanted them to last and remain successful.  While it was easy to want what “use to be,” He promised me that waiting would be worth it as long as I stayed plugged into my source, Him.  He reminded me each time I was tempted to look elsewhere for companionship and fall into old patterns of behavior, to grab hold of the helper (Holy Spirit) and let it guide me.  Falling in love was never meant to be easy or fast, it’s meant to be fulfilled by God in our lives separately.  When him and I are secure in our identities and know who we are in Christ, love will be what it was supposed to be from the beginning; two identities becoming one.

I  learned that I can be happy and be a whole person.  I don't need man in my life to define my worth.  Yes, I need prayer and we need each other, but I couldn't let others create my happiness for me.  I needed the love of Christ to renew my heart, create a new spirit in me, and reveal to me that the presence of the Lord is enough!  All of my needs are spiritual, including love.  Falling in love was meant to be deep, spiritual, and intimate not easy.  This is the love that I wanted and desired and was worth waiting for. I am so grateful for the man God placed in my life and designed for me. Through connecting with God and being led by the Holy Spirit, I learned what true love and patience is.