Have you ever received a love letter?
Like, a real one. a genuine, hand-written, college-ruled, snail mailed, cologne scented love letter?
Let me tell you– It’s quite an experience.
I open the mailbox. the initial rush of personally picking it up with my own hands and realizing what it is and who it’s from. Smiling stupidly is my specialty, so thus the side glance to see if anyone else notices my odd reaction. and the fact that it’s gotten really warm in here all of a sudden. awkward yawn. ok relaxed and safe to move on.
First things first, I don’t open it right away. No, something like this waits for solace and full attention. I could rip it open and feverishly read it immediately, but… that’s just not me. so I wait. but obviously not too long. really people.
I love to read outside so I search out a destination. Random rock, patch of grass, rusted bench- whatever. Just get there.
Letter in hand, heading to my “spot,” can’t get it off my mind. What’s he going to say? Of course, you know, I’ve already anticipated in my mind of what he’s going to tell me. I know him pretty well so I already have a good idea what kind of stuff he will say. But, what if he says something new? What about that “next level” thing I keep hearing about? Every time I think I’ve figured him out, there he goes surprising me yet again with another crazy awesome attribute. And is it possible he’s been thinking about me as much as I’ve been thinking about him? highly unlikely. but we’ll see.
At my spot. Looking at the envelope- yep, addressed to me. to ME! I still can’t believe he actually loves me. Even saying the word “love” just causes awe and wonder. goosebumps. undeserving.
Attempt to open slowly. Proceed to shred the envelope (because that’s the only way to open an envelope– why so difficult?!).
Dear Angela. Actually he addresses me differently, but that’s a little too personal to share here.
And then I read.
The first time through I read rather quickly, catching the highlights, just overjoyed that I actually get to hear from him! Whenever I read a letter from him, it really is almost like he’s here. with me.
And then the second read-through. A little slower, a little more methodical. And a third time. and a fourth time. It’s like each time I see something different. And because I’m weirdly analytical, I begin imagining about what he really meant with that sentence. What’s he actually saying when he writes that phrase? A special meaning just for me?? From what I hear though, typically guys mean what they say (ie, “I’m fine” actually really does mean “I’m fine.” Mind blown!). But still, I think he might be trying to lead somewhere deeper with this…hm, need to chew on this more.
Of course I have to reread my favorite parts. The ones that to me are the most endearing, truthful, beautiful words. Sure, I’d prefer for him to be here RIGHT NOW, but the next best thing are his words.
So then I sit back. stare aimlessly into space. and think about the letter. and him. I can’t stop smiling. I can’t stop longing. hoping. And anyone that walks by has no doubts: she’s in love.
What happens next? Well of course the letter is in an easily accessible and often-viewed place. Dashboard, bathroom mirror, desk drawer. And almost without thought the words of this love letter tend to spill over into conversations. You know what I mean. You’re at lunch with friends, in the middle of the the organic foods discussion, and “that person” keeps talking about the random non-topic related foods he likes to eat. “He totally loves tomato soup and grilled cheese and that’s what I’m making tonight– good recipes anyone?” Yeah, the day of the letter, I’m “that person.”
If you talk with me at any point during the day I read that letter, it’s inevitable– somehow a part of him will rub off on you. He’s just that awesome. and I can’t hide it because someone this amazing has stolen my heart, and honestly the only downfall is that he isn’t here next to me right now for me to introduce you to him. But the words of the love letter will do just fine for now. But trust me, meeting him is TEN TIMES more awesome!
So that’s my love letter story.
Ridiculous, huh? C’mon, I know you’ve been there. little smile?
And I’m smiling because, well, this really well-developed, thought-provoking, borderline embarrassing story may very well have been from my own imagination. yep, I’ve never actually gotten a hand-written love letter from someone. Was that a major letdown? do you still respect me? (Oh, and I’m not married yet though, so there’s still time bro!)
But, actually, this is a world rocking moment for me.
I have experienced this.
I have a love letter.
like, for real. and it’s from God.
Use your imagination. I think you can connect the dots.
What he’s been teaching me the past several years? The reality of what this “love letter” connection means and the depths of it. This is an illustration I’ve often used with my teen girls at camp, in random talks with friends about God’s words, and it came up in 2 separate conversations one day this week. I’ve been mulling over it. Been rebuked by it.
Do something- go back and reread this post and imagine Jesus as the “he” I refer to and make the setting one of personal time with Jesus. Why would the God that created us give us different love experiences, expectations and emotions on earth with another human than what he intended us to have with himself? Radical, I know, but really. think about it. God came up with Song of Solomon stuff. And it’s pretty radical and free and without fear. (and if you haven’t read the Song of Solomon story, you really should. It’s off the chain.)
Honestly, I don’t get it. This is so far from my reality I don’t even know why I’m writing this. I don’t understand this “love letter” connection stuff much right now, maybe somewhat attributing to being single, which is probably why marriage is attractive to me. But one way or another, on heaven or earth, I’m gonna experience that kind of love. There’s a wedding waiting for me.
So I’m thinking, if you’re not of the mind of a bride getting ready to walk down and meet her groom, maybe you don’t really know Jesus. Because he’s just that awesome. and he’s stolen my heart. and once I read his words to me, I can’t help but smile. and tell everyone about him. And I hope that some day people will walk by when I’m reading His words and say, “No doubt about it– she’s in love.”