“is this what you call love, love, love; this is what i am thinking of?” – lucy rose, be alright
So here I am, the night before an exam so I should probably be sleeping but oh well, who said sleep was needed anyway right? (joking, I’m not THAT irresponsible, my exam isn’t until the afternoon so I can have a nice sleep in the morning before my sausages and eggs as a totally healthy carb-free exam-day breakfast…
ANYWAY. (Swear I write that every single post, apologies. Kind of) Here I am sitting in my bed listening to Lucy Rose with my blanket beside me and my pillows all propped up and duvet casually all over me – standard student right? My first year at university is literally days away from being over and that is both exciting and kind of terrifying at the same time! I’ve learnt a lot, a fair bit about theology which is helpful but also quite a bit about myself and my life. I think I’ve grown up a fair bit since being here; my faith has grown and my knowledge of that funky chemistry in my head has broadened and I feel much stronger and much more ready to deal with it. Thank you to everyone who has made the effort to love me and put up with me – especially on those bad days when I know for a fact you all want to hit me with a happy hammer so I can see what you’re all talking about when you tell me that you love me, it’s these days that it means the most. So thank you. And a little thank you to anyone who’s been reading this, regularly or otherwise. It means a lot.
Looking over my posts as I do sometimes, I’ve used a lot of movie and TV couples to kind of get my point across. Whilst they’re all amazing movies and make me cry and laugh and all the rest of it, I still watch them with a slight sense of cynicism and wonder if that presentation of love is really what love is after all. Don’t get me wrong, I still think Carrie and Brody’s little scene where he tells her he knows she’s a psycho but he wants her anyway, that’s amazingly beautiful and I know I’ll probably end up watching it over the summer again just because it’s brilliant. BUT, I also keep in the back of my mind that as beautiful as it is, Carrie and Brody aren’t real people. The love they have isn’t real – but I have to say that it’s the closest presentation to love I’ve seen on TV that seems authentic to me.
You’re probably reading this like what the hell does she know? She’s 19, single and eats ice cream as if it was an olympic sport. Yes, yes I do do that readers and I think we should all just get over it already. But I’ve had a few experiences where ‘love’ has come and gone, people have let me down or I’ve let them down. Things were said that weren’t really meant and things happened that really shouldn’t have done – and I want to stress now that if you’re feeling those things too about your past experiences, no matter how old you are or how much ice cream you eat, that’s okay.
Firstly, it’s what you do with these experiences that counts. I know now that I fall too easily and far too quickly for it to even be real for me. I also know that trust is something that develops overtime, and not just in those ‘ooh isn’t he lovely’ post-kiss glances and cuddles in the cinema. It’s way more than that. Waaaaaay more.
Thing is, the major problem I have with this strange fake love, or ‘movie love’ I’ll call it, is that it really isn’t real at all. Like romcoms, I love a good romcom, but seriously? So what he held a door for you or saved the lift for you when it was about to close on you. The guy has good manners, that’s great. And? So he kisses someone else and then the next day comes back to you and tells you it’s him you want, erm, excuse me, why did you kiss the other girl in the first place? Call me a massive cynic or whatever, but I get seriously fed up with girls who feel like they’re worth this ‘movie-love’ that’s purely based on infatuation and all the rest of it. I’d like to state not, aside from the smushy stuff, I’m now thinking of at least 5 movies I’ve seen like this where I do genuinely believe he’s definitely into it and definitely head over heels for the lovely lass. I just have an issue when we think we can transpose it into our real lives, we can’t. Truth is, real love doesn’t come out of a 90 minute movie and a sometimes cracking soundtrack. It comes out of hard work and upset and a genuine commitment to keep going. Love like this doesn’t just happen. Usually, it takes you by surprise and it’s an amazing feeling. It goes way further than the butterflies and the ‘oh isn’t he lovely’ post-coital moments. It goes into the nitty gritty stuff, and real love STICKS AROUND, it doesn’t freak out and walk away.
Like Carrie and Brody, I guess.
Recently, a friend and I did a video montage of some guys at our church of what they find beautiful in a woman, and then general consensus seems to be that they would like to be with someone genuine, who they want to love and can love and who they can be loved by in return. We all have baggage, we all have crap and we all have rubbish that some of us deal with better than others. We all have pasts, we all have horror stories of rubbish relationships and woe-is-me sighs for the good ones that faded away. Does it mean we aren’t worthy of that real-life love that sticks it out and endures through it all?
No. It means you are.
I guess this is time for the cringy Christian bit. The person who loves us like this, through the nitty gritty and the sad stuff and the good stuff and the ‘I don’t ever want to think about that again’ times is Jesus. He made a pretty massive sign of commitment (okay, the BIGGEST one) and love for us, much more beautiful than any engagement ring or restaurant for a date. Nicer than the dress you want for your wedding or the suit you want for your best man. So so much more than that. He died, for you and for me, and He came to us and said to us that he wants all of the rubbish. And he wants to turn it into something so much better.
When you watch a movie next, and you get to the ending and you get that ‘my heart might explode’ feeling that I get most of the time I watch a good old romcom (basically cried at 27 Dresses, just putting that one out there) know that a love so much greater and a love so much better for you is found in the life and love and Cross of Jesus. I’m not saying don’t watch romcoms and enjoy them, or listen to that love song and have a certain someone in mind, I’d be a massive hypocrite otherwise – heck, look at Brody and Carrie, they came out of (let’s face it) one of the most controversial and messed up shows on TV right now, but I reckon if they were real people they would be strong and they would definitely be strong in the love they have for each other. It can happen, sometimes love and life can reflect the movies but usually not for long. Don’t base your love and your life on the movies when someone so much more real and tangible and LIFE CHANGING died for you on a cross some 2000 years ago declaring he loved you; he always has and he always will.
“Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
There we go, the classic Christian verse on love. But it’s SO TRUE. Love bears all things, believes all things. It doesn’t run away or panic or fade. People might do that, but love is what keeps it all together. Don’t get me wrong, I’m massively panicked as much as the next person about falling in love, but I know that if it’s real and if it’s right and it’s God-given then all those silly fears will fall away. Jesus is the author and perfecter of our faith right, so why not the author and perfecter of our love stories? Of our LIFE stories?
Life is way more than love, and I think that the movies often help us to forget that.
Jesus comes to give us life, and LIFE TO THE FULL. Love included. Best friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands, wives, whatever. Love exists in your life. It just might not be as it is in the movies, and you know what? I’m glad. Because as much as I fancy the pants off of Hugh Grant in the likes of Love Actually, I’d much rather have that life-giving love of Jesus and know that whatever happens, he will love me. And to trust him, and not a movie that might happen to reflect my life (soundtrack included at times), that if a husband is coming then he’ll help him to love me properly as well – and for the record, he’ll help me to love him properly too.
So basically, Jesus and not the movies. They make you feel good, yeah, and they make you day dream about what your love life could be, but they always have closing credits and they always come to an end. But the love of Jesus? Never-ending, never-forsaking. It’s a love for always.
Peace and blessings x
Pictures from Lulah and Becky Smeaton on Pinterest 🙂