Friday, June 12, 2009

Beauty and the Beast

I was just reading "Joyfully Home" (Jasmine Baucham's blog) and her post about this and was reminded of how much I loved it when I was little, Cinderella was okay, and the rest I didn't care a fig about, but Beauty and the Beast I loved, although we did not own it, it was my number one request when going to Grandma's house and I would very often bring it home with me.
Like Jasmine was talking about, pretty much all girls have their dream of "Prince Charming" (mine happened to be a beast, :) no, not really). While it is something my parents have taught to guard against and we try very hard to maintain that, it is extremely difficult, especially with movies like Pride and Prejudice, and many other of Jane Austen's works. Which I very much enjoy but find I have to be very careful that that does not become my ideal, such movies have a way of making us dissatisfied with real life and give us a perverted view of what love truly is. And while I know all of this I still have a tendency to daydream(what girl doesn't) and constantly have to pull myself back from a world of my own making and remind myself of how things really are.
Often in sharp contrast to the romance movies and books we see today we have the example of Christ's love in scripture to the Church, His bride. Can you imagine Christ being in love with the church the way love is portrayed today, "falling" in love with her because of outward reasons, there really is not much very lovely about the church today, then you have the thing where people "fall out" of love, what if Christ did that, fell in love then lived each day unsure if He would still be in love with His church the next. Christ's love is an all-consuming love, and it is a choice...

"Love is not a feeling. It is a overmastering passion to help and bless and deliver and comfort and strengthen and give joy to others just as the Lord Jesus always did.
In heaven everything and everyone is lovable, but as the Lord Jesus said ,"if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye ? "Matthew 5:46. In heaven everyone loves everyone else, and in hell no one loves anyone.But on earth we are in a perfect environment for learning to love as God loves: to abandon ourselves to loving the apparently unlovely people who remind us that in many ways we are still very unlovely ourselves!
Here on earth we have the opportunity to do what the God of love does all the time, and to learn to abandon ourselves to loving, to giving, to seeking and to saving others. Not a lovely feeling of affection, or physical pleasure and satisfaction, but the extreme ecstasy of creating happiness and good and blessed things for others to enjoy. To cast ourselves down in happy giving, asking for nothing in return except the joy of so doing. When we really begin to and practice that lesson we shall begin to feel "at home" in the eternal world of selfless love.
It is not some feeling one waits for, nor some person to evoke the love. It is an attitude of will. I will cast myself in giving. The lower I go the more love I am able to transmit from God to others, just like the Lord of love Himself, who was not content until He found and took the lowest place in the universe..." -Hannah Hurnard

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