Romantic movies try to create it. Love songs try to sing about it. Fairy tales try to capture it.
A longing lies in each of us for a Great Love Story.
We are drawn to such art, media, and entertainment because they touch in us this deep desire for love. Our hearts, and yes even our spirits, long for romance, adventure, and passion. We experience these thin attempts at love and long for more because they are only a shadow of a deeper desire.
Before time began, God wrote the story we crave. God set forth the plan to pursue and redeem us for Himself. He wrote the story of Jesus Christ as the Savior for us all.
In this Great Romance, He didn’t send Jesus to get us cleaned up good enough so he could finally show His love to us. No, this isn’t your familiar love story where the perfect looking hero and heroine meet, fall in love, and live happily ever after.
Instead, while we were yet sinners, broken, ugly, and undeserving of His attention, He sent Jesus as the Word made flesh because He already loved us. His motivation to send His Son as Savior of the World was because of His passionate love for us.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have Everlasting Life. John 3:16
Read it again for the first time.
It doesn’t say that He sent His Son to make the people lovable and then pursue us as the object of His Desire. Rather, He loved us first and then set in motion the plot of the Great Love Story. The Hero seeks out the heroine even before she knows He is searching for her!
The fourth week of Advent reminds us of this great love God has for each of us and to be reminded that God’s pure, passionate love was why He sent us a Savior.
It makes perfect sense, then, the weeks of Advent are all part of the Great Love Story- Thanksgiving giving way to Hope, Hope making room for Peace, Peace leading us to Joy, and Joy opening our hearts for Love. In a dramatic, breath-taking conclusion, Christ bursts onto the scene as a baby, Emmanuel- God with us, and Love’s Greatest Story is birthed in our hearts!
As we light the 4th candle of Advent, I pray this love story is written on your heart in such a way the celebration of Jesus’ birth floods you with Hope, Peace, Joy and most of all, Love!