In the same way that you cling to the need for protection from enemies (even though they cannot hurt the son or daughter of the Father in His realm of sovereign power), you also cling to the need for significance and affection from friends. This need is rooted in the fear of loss, which isn’t true love. There is no fear in love.
There is perhaps nothing more damaging than fear of loss masquerading as love. Such “love” only enables fear while true love remains hiding.
How can you love your husband or wife when you need them to be a certain way in order to feel secure? If they don’t offer the security or honor you think you deserve from them, you feel wounded. Wounding is what you fear.
Then the one you loved becomes a monster in your house and you feel compelled to either “help” them change (to fulfill your desire for honor and security), or you feel compelled to protect yourself from them – because they’ve become your enemy.
This doesn’t mean you must subject yourself to the physical abuse of another – if necessary remove your hand from that fire. But do so in love, not fear or condemnation.
Truly, most of what we call love is a little more than addictive clinging. The affection of another person makes us feel good about ourselves, much like a drug that comforts and makes us feel secure. When that person fails us, we get angry at the one we thought we loved.
To call your addictive clinging love is an error. As Yeshua made plain, the true measure of love is how well you love someone when they dishonor you, not when the demonstrate love to you. True love is not provoked now keeps any record of wrongs, as Paul made so clear. There is no fear of loss in love, because love doesn’t seek its own needs.
This is why Yeshua insists that you must hold of no account your neediness in all of your closest relationships. Hear Him: If you do not hate (hold of no account) father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters – even your own life – you cannot be my disciple.
Some have said that Yeshua means we should love God more than we love others, but these aren’t His words. Indeed, sanitizing His words only strips the power from His teaching. He uses the strongest possible terms without comparison – that is, “to hold of no account,” which is the meaning of hate.
Think about any romantic relationship you’ve had or have. Isn’t it true that your partner holds you to account? They expect you to be a certain way in order to satisfy their desire for honor, completion, or significance. As long as their expectations are met and you “love” or honor them as the wish to be “loved” and honored, they are pleased. They have their drug and their addiction is satiated.
But if you fail to meet your partner’s expectations in some way, they feel dissatisfied or unappreciated or let down. At times you will surely feel like enemies to each other.
The same is true of your own expectations of them.
Why do you feel so wounded when your partner fails you? Because you have placed your hope in them and they have let you down. You have inadvertently turned them into a god, thinking your relationship with them will save you. When they then fail to meet your expectation s, your identity is crushed. You feel lost, abandoned, unloved.
You see, you are searching for your meaning and your identity in a relationship by holding the closest to you to account. And you are calling this love. Yeshua says no. This is not what it means to follow the Way of love in Him.
Rather, love them by holding them of no account (hate) and by expecting nothing in return. By turning the other cheek in your heart rather than resisting them, just as you would an enemy. By loving them, even if they persecute you. And if you must, remove yourself from the situation just like you would remove your hand from the fire. But do so in love, without condemnation or holding record of wrong. The love you find in yourself by following these teachings of Yeshua will stagger you.
Your partner does not define you in the least. You only share a part of this life with that person, and you do so as the son or daughter of God whose identity is firmly rooted in Yeshua alone.
So then, be who you are. Love yourself and your neighbor and your enemy and your children and your partner in this way.
Love your friends, for you are now friend of Yeshua, your elder brother, in whom your identity is now made certain.
Imagine being accepted and truly loved exactly as you are at all times by your partner or friends, no matter what you do or don’t do. Now imagine your acceptance of them in the same way and focus on this latter state of being.
In such an ideal manifestation of love through the power of the Holy Spirit, no matter what they did, you would look at them without blame, feeling unprovoked and keep no record of wrong. What love you would then offer your partner, yourself and the world. How invulnerable you would be, in the world but not of it.
You would hold no record of wrong when they broke their promise to you, in the same way your Father holds no account of your wrong when you, like the prodigal, turn from Him so many times each day.
You would not be annoyed by them. You would not secretly wish they looked different, or were more appreciative, or were more honoring of you or made more money. You would simply love them, seeing beyond your need for them to be or not be a certain way.
And that is the end of part 2 to my writing from Ted Dekker….
It’s a hard thing… It really is. Especially if you are so use to being let down. Little things that wouldn’t bother most people bother you because there’s so much fear built up into you and even when you think you have it under control and you think you’ve dealt with it, it still creeps us and the flesh begins screaming at us telling us “Remember!” or “It should be this way!” and when we listen, it drives us into a place we cannot turn back from. We are stuck until we find a way out and all the while doubts begin to flood our minds and lies start to plague us and then we seek help and the help is good, but it only causes turmoil in our minds because we argue with ourselves because we then fear we are trying to reason out of what we are afraid of and make it not so, but then we fear if we reason out of it, it is only going to cause more damage. More fear. More hurt and heartache… And it sucks… It sucks being stuck in that position. I know.
But if we can learn to hold someone of no account little things won’t disturb us so and we’ll see more clearly. But we must not let the flesh sway us. We must trust in our identity in Yeshua. And no I’m not the best at this. I struggle with it. Not near as bad as I use to. But it’s still a struggle. Sometimes I wonder if it’s because I can hold friends of no account or if it’s because my past hurt has wrecked me… Maybe a little bit of both?
Anyway, y’all have a Fantastic Christmas and I’ll write to you soon!