I haven't been able to see Dana much for the past several weeks because she's been busy with school and I've been working a lot and there's just been a lot of different things going on. But my relationship with God has been great, like, He's just been calling me to sweet times of prayer and worship and seeing His hand moving in and through me. Then the other night Dana and I got to hang out and it was really good, we drove up to Bethlehem so we had a total of two hours in the car, which always results in good conversation. And throughout the night we were able to talk about our relationship with Christ and we prayed together (I don't want you to see us as super-spiritual, we talked about a lot of other things throughout the night too) and I left her house praising God, thanking Him for Dana and for the night that we had.
So then something struck me. I know people who struggle in their relationship with God when their spouse is away. Like, if their spouse leaves for a month or so (on good terms) and they don't have much contact, they just struggle spiritually to talk to God and walk with Him each day. But then I've talked to other people who, when their spouse leaves for a time, find their relationship with God very much enhanced. They have more time to spend with God and feel more committed to Him, and their relationship just grows so much.
Now, I'm not married, so that can play a huge part here, so I may come back in another 10 years and say this post was a bunch of huie, but that's to be seen. But I realized last night driving home, I've been in a dating relationship before where I struggled spiritually when we had more intimate and heart-to-heart times, and when our relationship was more distant, I actually enjoyed sweeter times with Jesus. And that was no fault of the other person, I've known that, the problem was my heart, but it made me wonder last night: What's different? What made me struggle spiritually in that relationship but find with this relationship that it really seems to have no effect on my walk with Christ?
Here's what I realized. I love Dana, and I only love Dana, because I feel that God has called me to her. To a romantic that sounds really bad, in fact, it almost sounds "unloving", or like it isn't love. I don't have space to clarify that issue here, so maybe that will be another blog post, but the point here is that I love Dana BECAUSE I love God. And we've actually seen this in our relationship, where when my relationship with Christ is suffering, my relationship with Dana suffers. But its not the other way around.
So basically I have this picture in my head that I'm trying to communicate and feel like I'm doing a really bad job at....or like its going to take me 5 pages to say it..... Basically, I've been at a place where I was trying to be in a relationship AND be a Christian, instead of being in that relationship BECAUSE I was a Christian. This can relate to any area of life. Work, school, friends, hobbies, vacations. If we do this things BECAUSE we love God, then in them our relationship with God will flourish. I've seen people work a job that they hate but do it because they have to, and the whole time they were wishing they could be "serving God" when if we would all just see that what we are doing COULD BE service to God, and then if we were to take a different perspective on it and go to work BECAUSE we love God, instead of loving God despite going to work, our Christian walks would be much more consistent and our love for Christ much more evident.
Abide in the vine, for without Him you can do NOTHING.