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The Love You Deserve

“They deserve each other.”

Back in college, two of my closest friends and I kept a friendship journal. We call “it” F.A.Y. which are the initials of our nicknames. We took turns to write about our lives, past or recent, and passed it among us so we can read and react. We wrote anything and everything. No holds barred. If someone outside the circle would just read F.A.Y., we’d be drowning in shame by then. Which reminds me, where are those journals? Uh-oh.

So, F and I (Y) were talking writing about my crush who had a crush on his crush who had a crush on neither of them. Magulo? Bahala ka dyan. Haha.

I was like, “I don’t deserve him. He deserves someone like her. She deserves a guy like him. They deserve each other.”

And F was like, “what exactly does it mean for someone to deserve someone? How would you know if you deserve a certain kind of love?” (Paraphrased, of course. So, F, if you are reading this, kindly remind me the exact words you used. That is, if you still remember. Lol.)

Back then, I wondered why F didn’t understand what I was trying to say. As a school girl, I strongly believed that if you’re a Dean’s lister, a good-looking, and cool person then you only deserve someone from the same league or someone who has the same credentials. What I was trying to say was, they were a perfect match.

In a merit-based and self-entitled world, we are to do this and do that so we will get this reward and that. So, if we don’t produce anything, we don’t deserve anything, too. Seems nothing wrong with that. Sounds fair, won’t you agree?

I think that basis is a positive driving force for us to level up, to keep trying to be the best version of ourselves.

It worked for me. As a single mom, it’s quite easy, or should I say it comes natural, for us to think lowly of ourselves. We feel that after the unwise decisions we made, we aren’t worthy of anything wonderful in our lives, most specially in relationships aspect. So, the tendency is to settle for something “less”.

But not me. I pushed to level up myself so I will be deemed worthy and “deserving”. Look around you. Bragging aside, the most amazing, strong-willed, and fun people to be around with are sometimes the single moms. We have colorful characters and personalities. Why? Because we strive to be better so that we can deserve “better”.

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Congratulations, good for me? Since Boy-Labo-Linaw-Ligaw, I kept on asking God, what did I do to deserve all these blessings? There goes the “deserve” word again. How conditional was my mindset about love? Very.

I have a confession… if I was to honestly answer my question to God, I would list down all the good things I have done for Him:
1. How many times I finished reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation
2. How often I went to church
3. How high I raised my hand during worship
4. How many outreaches I’ve spearheaded and joined
5. How many people have I invited to church
6. How many people I’ve inspired through this blog (?!?)
7. How I never murdered somebody
and the list goes on… but God’s answer:

Nothing.

Huwattt, Lord? All those good things are nothing?! Who What Where When Why?!!

They will be rewarded accordingly but the point is, our good deeds are not the basis of our worthiness.

The truth is, all those good things, they don’t mean anything. None of them can add to our credentials because the Bible says in Isaiah 64:6:

“All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.”

So, whenever I think that I deserved all the blessings in my life today, God just had to take hold of my heart and remind me that:

“For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the LORD set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but it is because the LORD loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers, that the LORD has brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.” (Deuteronomy 7:6-8, ESV)

That promise was fulfilled through Jesus Christ who displayed God’s perfect love on the cross.

After nine years only did I understand why my deserving-undeserving principle confused F. It’s because true love doesn’t keep track, it just loves no matter what. And how wonderful it is to experience such unconditional love!

Nothing that we do, no matter how good, will make us deserve the love and forgiveness of God. But here’s the mind-blowing truth:

He loved us. He loved us not because of who we are or what we can do. It’s not our human effort, but his love for us, that made us worthy. He loved us because of who He is and He is love.🙂

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