Updated: Jan 1, 2021
The bitter feelings of rejection and loneliness that creep up on college students… oh boy, I am so passionate about this!! Let’s talk, let’s be real!! Scrolling in my room alone on a weekday night, I encounter photo after endless photo of friend groups having the time of their lives and going on grand adventures together. Doing homework alone at a coffee shop, I see friends chatting over lattes or couples enjoying quality time. In these moments, it’s easy to feel a little…jealous?? Which is crazy right? Because I certainly post pictures with my amazing friend group multiple times a week. I have coffee dates with girlfriends literally once a day. I am far from being lonely, and yet, I can feel so alone.
I am bold enough to assume that there are days that you are right here with me. Despite the sweet friends that you hold close to your heart, you find yourself wishing that someone would reach out to you first. You catch yourself selfishly desiring that anyone, truly anyone, would just go out of their way to surprise you or to show you they are thinking of you. We push these feelings away instead of confronting them because we think they are unjustified.
I want to confront them. Can we do something COURAGEOUS together and bring these feelings to the light? I can be honest and say that sometimes I feel like I am pouring love out on others and am getting nothing in return. Friends, that is the enemy speaking lies over our hearts. Is it really love if we are expecting something in return? What standard are we holding our friends to?? People will always disappoint us because we are wicked creatures, tangled up in the mess of our humanity. Are we expecting our friends to fill a hole of contentment only God can fill?? Is that why we can feel so unsatisfied?
HEAR THIS… we love the Lord, but He loves us MORE. His love for us is intentional, specific, personalized, and intimate. The Lord desires to spend so much time with you. You are His first choice. He wants to hear all about everything you are thinking and feeling. His love chases us down when we run away. He pursues us even when we reject Him. The God of the universe is fighting for you- fighting on your behalf and fighting for your affection. Oh what a friend we have in him!
Lord, forgive me, for while I am on Earth I will never fully understand this love you have for me. I will never be able to give you the love and attention you deserve. Take me deeper, God. Increase my understanding of your love and help it be ENOUGH for me.
FRIENDS, the love of the Lord CAN be enough for us. His ways are so much higher than our ways. His plans are so much greater than our plans. When we submit to Him, He will guide our steps. The love our hearts are searching for in earthly things can only be filled by our father.
But also, I am running fast and hard away from the prosperity gospel. I reject this idea that God exists to cater to my desires. The submission of my heart allows God to work and for his plan to proceed, but it does not mean I am going to get what I want. Surrender should have no strings attached.
Sometimes our desires and what God desires for us line up. When they do, our hearts can be filled with joy simply because the Lord gives us sweet things when He doesn’t have to. It’s not by our righteousness that we receive blessings, but by his mercy (Daniel 9:18). Our surrender and obedience do not determine whether God gives us what we want or not. His love for us is NOT a conditional love.
Because sometimes when we surrender, the Lord’s plans are completely different that our own. Our obedience can be blessed without our desires being granted. The Lord knows best. He is teaching, molding, and correcting. A “no” from the Lord is not a punishment. It’s a blessing. He has our best interests at heart. ALWAYS. That’s a promise for forever and ever.
We will be able to love our friends so much greater if we are being filled with Christ’s love. Our relationships will be stronger if we allow God to bring us worth and contentment, not the people around us. The Lord is fighting for full ownership of our hearts. Won’t we let him have it??