There's a new buzz in town. Have you heard about it? He is the man every woman has been dying to see. He is every woman's love interest. Women everywhere are enticed by this young, handsome, business-savvy, and charming man. The man every woman has been waiting for is....Christian Grey.
The popular character from the novel, Fifty Shades of Grey is far from being a Christian. To add further, his (unmentionable) bedroom acts confirm that there is no "grey" area here. The man (and the book), are blatantly sadistic.
Every woman dreams of having the type of romance where a man will pursue her and take her to a place where she has never been before. But the truth is, this fantasy is just a counterfeit of the real deal...it's just...well...a fantasy.
We live in a world that is awestricken with love stories. But they are not love stories at all - they are just lust stories, sex-fantasy stories, and violent domination stories. Even as young men and women, before we began to have any knowledge about our bodies, we were fed lies about what true love is. Experiencing the perverse version of love is hard enough, but even more dangerous, it ultimately hinders our love and intimacy for God.
The reality is that God is love. The man every woman has really been dying to see has already died for you and me on the cross 2000 years ago. That man's name is Jesus! With outstretched arms on the cross, HE made the ultimate sacrifice. HE gave the most selfless act of love. HE is the one that took the most violent of beatings so that he may live with you for eternity. When God said "I will love you forever", HE meant it! YOU are HIS love interest. There is no "forever" that is greater than eternity. Men (and women) make promises everyday they don't mean...and I am sure Christian Grey is no different. Besides, he is just the buzz word for today. Give it a few months (or with great marketing and lots of media, a few years) and we will not even remember the name...Christian Grey.
But one name that always was, always is, and always will be is the name of Jesus.
I encourage you today to read a real love story. It is the story of God's love for you and for me. If you have never read the Bible, start in the book of Hosea...WOW!
Hosea is a prophet of love, but not the kind of perverse love the world feeds us. It is an astonishing romantic love story that parallels God's love for His people. Hosea is commanded to marry a common prostitute and have children with her...well, I don't want to give any of the story away so you will just have to read it for yourselves!
God loves us, chases us, and pursues us at our worst. He keeps us after He gets us and shows us what real love is all about. Knowing this type of love will cure any desires for neurotic distortions of love that keeps us from loving the God who first loved us.