The loss of love, for whatever reason, can be painful. Whether it's the end of a romance, the end of a marriage, or the loss of a loved one, for some, the world can go dark. And they may fear that no one will ever love them again in that special way. Many who have faced this kind of loss have found comfort in the Bible's message of God's love.
The book of Jeremiah provides this comforting passage: "The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee" (31:3).
God is Love everlasting. Love never leaves, because God never leaves. God expresses His love in tangible and infinite ways. The love we receive from others is an expression of God's love, but it's not the sum total of His love for us. So if a loved one goes out of our lives for whatever reason, we can assure ourselves that we are still cherished and cared for by infinite Love. In humility and gratitude we can ask Love to show us evidence of its continuity in our lives.
And who could possibly know better than God the best way to keep us securely fulfilled? As our Father-Mother, Love knows us through and through and will supply us with guidance in overcoming feelings of loss while also opening up innovative ways to feel companionship again.
A woman whose husband had passed on proved this. About the same time that she became widowed, a friend got divorced. The divorced woman had a very large house, and she asked the widow if she'd like to rent some rooms from her. They'd each been praying for a comfortable and progressive way to move forward in their lives without their husbands. And they were each convinced that God had provided this unexpected solution to them. They knew God would bless their friendship in ways that healed the grief of the loss of their husbands.
And so it has proved to be. As they've grown in their understanding of God's everlasting love, a deep sense of sisterhood and compatibility has blossomed and continues to bless them every day. Although they've both done some dating, neither feels that marriage or romance is the only way to feel loved and cared for. They each find great joy, satisfaction, and balance in new and renewed relationships with male friends and male relatives.
The founder of this newspaper, Mary Baker Eddy, shared this promise in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures": "Love enriches the nature, enlarging, purifying, and elevating it. The wintry blasts of earth may uproot the flowers of affection, and scatter them to the winds; but this severance of fleshly ties serves to unite thought more closely to God, for Love supports the struggling heart until it ceases to sigh over the world and begins to unfold its wings for heaven." She later continued: "Sorrow has its reward. It never leaves us where it found us" (p. 57, 66).
With every disappointment comes the opportunity to learn more about God's love. The human need for consolation invites a divine response from our benevolent and tender God. When we turn to Him for comfort, we find ourselves embraced in His grace. With continuing examples of His uninterrupted devotion to His creation, our confidence in His ability to perpetually meet our every need strengthens. Then we can more contentedly move onward, at peace with ourselves and with others.
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil
but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
I Corinthians 13:4-8, New International Version