I just finished watching the movie, Fireproof, again.
First let me say - this is an excellent movie!
If you have never seen it, please, consider doing so!
I have read blogs and articles that attacked it as being “unBiblical” or detrimental to relationships.
Those blogs and articles are attacking it because IT WORKS!
Done right, with the right heart and spirit, IT WORKS!
Sadly, in our world today, true and pure love, God’s Love, is not held to a high standard.
We are more pressured to do what feels good in the moment, and to look out for ME.
Before I pushed “play” this evening, I struggled with even watching this movie.
Rick and I had watched it when it was first released.
And yes, it changed our life.
It changed our relationship.
I sat on the futon, holding the remote in my hand, looking at the button “play”.
And I asked God, “Why watch this movie? It’s about relationships. It’s about marriage. I am no longer in a relationship, no longer married. God, I am a widow. So why should I watch this movie?”
But the more I questioned God, the stronger the urging to watch it became.
Finally, I said, “Ok, God. What can I learn from this tonight? What do You want me to take from this?”
I had NO idea what loaded questions those would turn out to be!
I pushed the button “Play”.
And as the movie began, I continued to pray for an open mind, and a seeking heart.
In the last few minutes of the movie, my tears flowed hot and heavy down my face.
There seemed to be no end to them.
I miss Rick so very much.
I miss loving him.
I miss being loved by him.
I could use a gazillion words to tell all that I miss about him, about our life together, and it would not be enough.
As I sat here watching these final moments, I remembered when we watched this movie together.
It was in these final scenes that I had looked over at Rick, and saw the tears streaming down his face.
I reached over, took his hand, and he looked into my eyes.
He said, “We need to pray.”
And we prayed as the tears continued to fall.
We recommitted our individual lives to the Lord, as well as our marriage.
To hear my name prayed over and over by my husband was an honor, and it humbled me.
We had a good marriage.
We had an excellent relationship.
But thru this movie, we wanted MORE.
We wanted God first, last, and all thru the middle.
More than we ever had in the past.
And we gave ourselves to it.
But back to me watching this movie alone.
So, did I take away anything for ME as a widow?
A challenge to 40 days praying and seeking God as my Husband now, to loving Him as He is worthy to be Loved and Adored, and to love myself - Rick’s widow - as God loves me.
Using the book, “The Love Dare”, as a basis for my 40 days, I begin.
Lord, I don’t know what I am doing.
I don’t know how to do what I am doing.
Please, show me how to apply the principles of this book to me, a widow, learning to Love You, my Heavenly Husband ... and learning to love me, as You already do.
Before getting into the Days of Love -
I must answer this question:
Who am I?
- I am a Christian
- I am Rick’s wife, well his widow now
- I am Momma to my children, Angel and Joshua
- I am Grannee to my grandchildren, Elijah, Brooke, Shell and Kyla
- I am Mother in law to Dessie
- I wear a lot of hats, with different relationship names, to family and to friends
Thru the years my roles have changed in each of these.
I am older now, my body doesn’t always work the way it did years ago
I am no longer needed like I once was.
Sometimes, it even feels like I am no longer wanted - but that’s mostly because life gets busy for others, and less busy for me.
The answers of the world:
- I am too old to be useful
- I am overweight
- I am out of shape
- I am not of much worth or value, especially since I have been out of the work force for so many years
- I am no longer a wife, so what good am I to anyone?
I sit here this evening asking myself: “Who are YOU, Margaret?”
Where is my identity?
What is my worth?
What is my value?
What is the purpose for me sucking air?
These are hard questions anytime in life.
But sitting here alone near midnight, after watching this movie?
The house is still and quiet,
The tears won’t stop -
Yeah ... Lord, help me please!
Thankful to remember that the Lord reads my tears!
He’s going to be up all night with these falling now!
So, with the question “Who am I?” sticking in my throat, burning rivulets down my face,
and my heart crying out to God that He would help me find the answers,
these words come to mind, and I realize that of all words, these explain exactly "who I am" to me:
I am a bruised reed.
A faintly burning wick.
Life has done this to me.
BUT ... His promise?
“A bruised reed He will not break, and a faintly burning wick He will not quench.” Isaiah 42:3
Who am I?
I am precious. Honored. Loved.
“Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you.” Isaiah 43:4
Who am I?
I am part of “The Holy People”, the Redeemed of the Lord.
“And they shall be called The Holy People, The Redeemed of the Lord.” Isaiah 62:12
Who am I?
I am blessed. Ephesians 1:3
I am chosen. Ephesians 1:4
I am holy. Ephesians 1:4
I am blameless. Ephesians 1:4
I am predestined. Ephesians 1:5, 11
I am adopted. Ephesians 1:5
I am redeemed. Ephesians 1:7
I am forgiven. Ephesians 1:7
I am to the praise of His Glory. Ephesians 1:12
I am sealed with the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 1:13
I am called with a Hope. Ephesians 1:18
I am part of the Body of Christ. Ephesians 1:22-23
I am alive. Ephesians 2:5
I am saved. Ephesians 2:5, 8
I am raised up. Ephesians 2:6
I am God’s workmanship. Ephesians 2:10
I am created in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:10
I am near to God. Ephesians 2:13
I am reconciled. Ephesians 2:16
I am no longer a stranger or alien. Ephesians 2:19
I am a citizen in the House of God. Ephesians 2:19
I am a dwelling place for God. Ephesians 2:22
Who am I?
I am all of this and more, so much more!
Not because of who I am in myself,
- in myself I am so very ordinary, nothing special
Not because of anything I have done.
I do not deserve God’s Mercy, nor His Grace
- but isn’t that the point of Mercy and Grace? Undeserved, but oh so given!
But I am who I am ... because of the Great I AM, and who HE says I am.
Because of what HE has done
Because of Who HE is!
I am no longer a slave to fear ...
I am a child of God!
That is who I am.
That is my identity.
That is my worth.
That is my value.
That is my purpose for sucking air! 😉
I am a child of God.
And as a child of God, I am loved.
If God has loved me enough for Jesus, His only begotten Son, to come to earth, live His life, take my sin to the Cross and die for me, defeat the devil on his own grounds, and rise again to be at the right hand of God the Father interceding for me - -
Then ... I am enough to be loved by me, too.
I can only imagine the pain of my heart to think about one of my children or grandchildren not loving themselves.
- Because I love them so much! I see their worth, their value. And I want them to see themselves like I see them.
(I learned that from God, by the way. 😉 )
Remember, Jesus said that we are to love our neighbors (which means those around us, those in our world) AS WE LOVE OURSELVES. Matthew 22:39
Important question here - So, if we don’t love ourselves, how do we love others?
And if we don’t love ourselves the way God does, how do we love others the way He does?
Now, this is not about the “ME” generation.
This is not about putting ME first in anything.
God loved us FIRST.
We are to love Him back.
And we show our love for Him by loving others, as we love ourselves.
How can we say we love God, and even love others, but then hate ourselves?
I am a child of God. Romans 8:15, Galatians 4:7
I am to love myself the way God does.
I Corinthians 13
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient and kind,
Love does not envy or boast;
It is not arrogant or rude.
It does not insist on its own way,
It is not irritable or resentful;
It does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
Love bears all things,
Believes all things,
Hopes all things,
Endures all things.
Love never fails.
As for prophecies, they will pass away;
As for tongues, they will cease;
As for knowledge, it will pass away.
For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.
When I was a child, I spoke like a child,
I thought like a child,
I reasoned like a child.
When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.
For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face.
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.
So now faith, hope and love abide, these three;
But the greatest of these is love.”
Using the counsel of Rick so often given to others, re-read these words and insert YOUR name where it says “I” or “love”.
How do you measure up?
I’ve got some changes to make, some learning to do.
Lord, help me be better, do better
Make me more like Jesus, and less like me.
This is my journey in daring to love me like God does,
and thru that - learning to love others as I love myself.
“A Widow’s Dare to Love”
Life goes on -
Website designed & developed by Margaret McCoy
God is God over the storms in my life & world -
and I am His.
Trusting in Him. Holding to His Promises as He holds me.
Learning to laugh, to love, & to live ... again - without Rick, but with God
Life goes on ... even when we don't want it to.
Great grief is indicative of a great Love.
Rick, my Sweetheart.
Margaret, his Beloved.
Always & Forever.