Love is on Your Horizon
I grew up watching the Love Boat. Ok…so, right now, I know I’m dating myself a bit, so let me just take care of that first. I’m forever 21 x 2.57. Or in layman’s terms….old. At least old to most of you reading this. You can do the math.
Or use a calculator. It’s easier.
Everything I learned about love and romance, I learned from the love boat ladies and from what I could tell, most relationships were born over cute little cocktails—the kind with a tiny umbrella garnished with an orange slice and a cherry. All a girl had to do was get a tan, fix her hair and sit at the bar and wait. Then, BAM….Mr. Handsome would appear out of nowhere. I couldn’t wait. Love was certainly on my horizon.
Exciting and new.
At least age has brought me wisdom. When I was 21 x 1.0, I was so naïve. I believed everything guys told me, but let me just say this: Most lie when cocktails and a tanned lady are involved. I heard a lot of stupid stuff.
And then I got married.
That’s when the fog cleared. My husband unpacked a lot of baggage I had never seen before. Pornography and drug addiction. Manipulation, abuse and deceit. Plus he was allergic to work. We fought everyday. My “for better or worse” turned into “for bitter or worse.” My world spun out of control. I was desperate for Relief.
He was easy to find.
Relief (not his real name) was 6’2” and a really good dancer. When I was single, looking for love was called dating. Now it was called adultery.
At first it was intoxicating. But adultery lied. The high was short lived and addictive. Soon I needed More.
More was also easy to find. He sits on barstools everywhere. Just waiting.
Months later, when the news of my affairs came out, my own baggage exploded everywhere. I didn’t even know I had baggage. I managed and stuffed my shame for so long its familiarity convinced me it was normal. Didn’t everyone live this way? But now, my sin was exposed for all to see. I was naked and ashamed. That’s when I noticed Him.
He had been sitting there all along. Waiting. I had no tan and my hair wasn’t fixed, but in spite of my mess He loved me deeply.
He didn’t offer me a cocktail; He offered me living water. Love finally arrived and He was exciting and new. Little by little He helped me deal with the issues of my past. Rejection, bitterness, unworthiness and shame.
These assailants haunted me all my life. As a young girl I always felt less. I longed for my father’s approval, but he wasn’t affectionate and I don’t remember him ever telling me he loved me. When I got older, I looked for validation and affection from others, and as soon as I was old enough to date, from boys, and later, my marriage.
I’d like to say that once Love took my hand my marriage got better, but it didn’t. My marriage crumbled over the next several years, but I got better. In the midst of drug addiction and abuse, Love showed me the secret place. He taught me how to have joy in the midst of junk and how to have peace in the midst of problems. Then He used adversity in my marriage to teach me something I never knew how to do—forgive. Not for the offender, but for me. To set me free from the bondage of my past.
My husband and I were divorced after ten years of marriage, but today I can say that I’m thankful for the adversity I suffered. I’m not the same woman I once was. I’m no longer bitter. I’m better. Offenses taught me how to forgive. Pain has produced hope in me.
Romans 5:3 tells us to rejoice when we go through issues because our problems produce perseverance. Our perseverance produces character. And character allows us to enjoy the hope that never disappoints.
Are you in the middle of some junk? Do you feel like a broken mess? Can I encourage you? I know being a single mom can be difficult. For years, even though I was married, I functioned like a single mother, but after my divorce, raising three children without child support brought a flood of new challenges. But Love brought me through. I know He can bring you through too!
When you surrender your issues to Him, He produces something beautiful. Love is on your horizon. He is exciting and new. Won’t you come aboard?
He’s expecting you!
Christy Johnson is the author of Love Junkies, 7 Steps for Breaking the Toxic Relationship Cycle. As a national speaker, certified life coach and soul-health advocate, Christy is bold and transparent about imparting hope to women and leading them on a journey of self-discovery to break the toxic love rut. Her captivating testimony about how Christ redeemed her addiction to love and helped her forgive the offender who was responsible for the death of her youngest son will inspire you to ditch the drama and walk in forgiveness. For more information and a free ebook, How to Live Soul Healthy in a Toxic World, visit Christy at christyjohnson.org.
The Life of a Single Mom (TLSM) is a 501c3 nonprofit that exists to serve single parents and those who work with single parents. We are fully accredited through a variety of organizations that include high levels of financial accountability and awards for our premiere financial stewardship, including GuideStar, Evangelical Council of Financial Accountability, Great Nonprofits, Chamber of Commerce, LANO, and others.