Raw Love

The post below is in celebration of the nine years I’ve truly been falling in love with Christ. I knew Him prior, but nine years ago today, He touched that deep, hidden place within me with the unbearable pain of my daughter Hannah’s accident that resulted in a traumatic brain injury.  So today, I celebrate two things….she is alive and well, but more than that, I have fallen in love…


So there’s this love…you know, the kind that makes you want to dance in your kitchen twirling in delight…the kind that makes you gaze uninterrupted at the stars like you’ve never seen anything so glorious.

The stop and catch your breath kind of love…

the nothing in the world is wrong in this moment kind of love…at least that’s how it feels.

The searching for words, but silence makes it more beautiful kind of love.  If you’ve fallen in love, you know what I’m talking about.

Maybe that’s all.  Maybe there’s more.

Maybe there’s a a love that transcends feeling, time, joy, pain, grief, fear…the raw, knee-aching because they’ve been bent low too long, kind of love…


You feel it cry out from the deepest place inside of you.  You didn’t even know that place existed because you couldn’t feel it before. Before the pain came.  It was then you noticed it was there.

That place.  The pain made that place feel alive, and it was deep…so deep it scared you.  So deep, when you felt it, you knew you would never be the same.  It was that place where groanings replaced words and deep cried out to deep.  Because somewhere deep inside you, you needed to touch the deepest place of Christ and hear the Father’s heart.

It was the only way, really.

You prayed to know Him, really know Him, because over time your heart craved more, longed for more…

couldn’t breathe without more of Him.

But you didn’t know the door through which He would lead you meant loss.  I mean, you thought you could keep the things that made this world make sense…that made God make sense,

like happiness,

healthy babies,

strong and solid marriages,

loved ones here forever,

material comforts…

all good things, that He gave to you.

Those were such good things, some a memory now. They taught you to love…to love so hard.  But there was something different about that love, real as it was, as it is…that love didn’t come from that deep place, for it couldn’t.

He hadn’t yet touched it.

Oh, His prints were on everything.  You saw the work of His hands in your children’s round pudge, molded, cast and set perfectly on each side of their faces.  Their eyes that caught the sun at just the right moment or reflected the rain.

Their hair that smelled like…well, like them…

curly with sweat.

And you wished you could capture that scent in a bottle to remind you of small faces, nestled…. hiding in the crook of your neck…to remind you of the smell of love, because children are only for a moment in time.

All marks of God.

Skillfully wrought.

A tapestry of wild colors woven together in one child, and subtle, quiet tones in another.  Perfect.  You would breathe in life at its sweetest and it was well with your soul.

But your soul didn’t know there was a place that was left yearning, and so because He couldn’t leave that part of you untouched by His far-reaching love, He reached down into it…

and you thought you might die.

But it was there He taught you to love in a way that would never leave you wanting, except for more of Him.

Maybe some of you know what I am talking about.  Maybe some of you feel this craving, but haven’t been able to make sense of it…and something is stirring, something is whispering…”though you do not see Him, you love Him…with joy inexpressible.”

This love, this raw, bleeding love that cannot be shaken, or stolen, or broken, or forgotten, or provoked to anger or envy, or betrayed

or lost…

poured out like oil...

this infinite love you cannot see, yet wells up with inexpressible joy from that deepest part of your soul and says, “Welcome home, my Life, my Love…”because now it has entered there and betrothed itself to you…an unbreakable covenant love, and so begins the eternal dance that leaves you breathless with delight because His Name is Ishi (Husband), and He is faithfully leading you home.