“What were the things that romanced your heart as a girl?”
For me it was:
- A good book
- Pretty flowers
- My father’s undivided attention
- Finding a bargain (while out shopping)
- An encouraging word from my mother
For the past week or so I have been reading Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul by John and Stasi Eldredge. Today however, I began the chapter titled “Romanced”. After the section where the co-authors shared anecdotal accounts of how they had been “romanced” by God, I began thinking about recent instances when God had been romancing me. When we talk about being “romanced” by God, it equates to those moments when God “woos” us—times when his love and pursuit of our hearts is revealed through earthly majesty.
John and Stasi Eldredge further noted that, “Every song you love, every memory you cherish, every moment that has moved you to holy tears has been given to you from the One who has been pursuing you from your first breath in order to win your heart. God’s version of flowers and candlelight dinners comes in the form of sunsets and falling stars, moonlight on lakes and cricket symphonies; warm wind, swaying trees, lush gardens, and fierce devotion. This romancing is immensely personal. It will be as if it has been scripted for your heart. He knows what takes your breath away, knows what makes your heart beat faster.”
God just kissed me on Friday, January 31st when one of my 3rd period students turned in an extra credit assignment. First off, I rarely provide students with “extra credit” opportunities. I firmly believe that if he or she gives enough time and attention to the assigned work, there would be no need for extra credit. However, I’ve been doing some educational research on motivation and thought that providing random extra credit assignments may motivate some students to take advantage of their education. At any rate, the objective was for the students to transform a letter they had recently written in a previous assignment. The letter the students wrote was a persuasive letter to their parents in which they attempted to get their parents to change their mind about a decision, rule, restriction or ideology through the inclusion of the three persuasive appeals: logos, ethos, and pathos. For the extra credit assignment students had to change their role/perspective as a writer, alter their intended audience, and change the format/writing mode. With all that said, the 3rd period student’s letter had been transformed to an invitation. It wasn’t some Microsoft Publisher crafted document; it was hand made with an embossed wax label. When he handed it to me my face lit up. After class ended I picked up the invitation once again and marveled at the detail and precision with which the student had crafted his assignment. As an educator I strive to impress upon my students that taking the initiative is an impressive trait. I also want them to understand that the quality of their work speaks volumes to their personal character and is a reflection of who they are inherently. When this young man not only turned in a thoughtfully prepared product, but had also done so before the due date; I was moved to tears. This was one of those instances that had brought me into the teaching profession. Without realizing it (at that moment in time), I had been kissed by God. A student had taken the initiative and gone above and beyond the general expectations—God had kissed me, romanced my heart.
While the euphoria of God’s kiss has swelled my heart, I have come to realize why the ending of my last romantic relationship was so emotionally crippling for me. For fourteen months I had been courted—I was taken care of financially, I was treated like a lady, I had satisfying conversations with my mate, I and my mate shared of our spirituality, I had been romanced, and for a time–I had been the singular object of one man’s affection and attention. It was God’s kiss, God’s way of romancing me through another earthly vessel. And then it abruptly ended. To this day I long to be courted once more. For during those fourteen months I was ablaze and alive. Nevertheless, I understand why the man I loved chose another woman—but that’ll have to wait for another entry—“The Unveiling of a Woman’s Beauty”. Until then, here are some additional profound statements from John and Stasi Eldredge’s book. Ladies, if you haven’t read the book Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul by John and Stasi Eldredge, please do. It will open your eyes of understanding.
Notable “Nuggets” from John and Stasi Eldredge:
- “You are meant to fill a place in the heart of God no one and nothing else can fill.”
- “ . . . he [God] wants your obedience, but only when it flows out of a heart filled with love for him.”
- “God delights in revealing himself to those who will seek him with all their hearts.”
- “We have missed many of his notes simply because we shut our hearts down in order to endure the pain of life.”
- “God has been wooing you ever since you were a little girl.”
- “A woman becomes beautiful when she knows she’s loved.”
- “As women we long to be loved in a certain way, a way unique to our femininity.”
- “ . . . he [God] will thwart our efforts to find life apart from him . . .”
- “He [God] often takes us aside from every other source of comfort so that he alone can have our heart’s attention.”
- “Our hearts yearn to be loved intimately, personally, and yes, romantically . . . to be the object of desire and affection of one who is totally and completely in love with us.”
- “Worship is what we give our hearts away to in return for a promise of Life.”
- “No, to be spiritual is to be in a Romance with God.”
- “The desire to be romanced lies deep in the heart of every woman. It is for such that you were made. And you are romanced, and ever will be.”
PS: Chyla, thank you for recommending this book. I love you girl!