Young Romance & Blazing Fires
As I was walking this morning a wild rose bush covered in blossoms transported me to another time and another place. I was a young girl walking with my parents. The ditch beside the road was covered in wild roses. I watched as my dad picked the perfect rosebud and put it in my mother’s hair. Both their eyes had the spark, they were clearly in love.
Our second and last fledgling has a special someone in her life, and yes chivalry can still be found. He let us know his intent was to court her and requested our blessing. During the past several weekend visits, love and romance has been in the air. Naturally memories of our own first meeting and courtship is being stirred. A couple weeks ago this young man gave our daughter her first rose, then returned to his car, and came back with Mother’s Day flowers for me. I was a flood of memories. I went to our bedroom and proudly recovered my first rose, now dusty and covered in cobwebs. How could 28 years pass so quickly? I vividly remember the moment, the twitter, the spark… “Oh to be young again” we’ve all heard the phrase as if romance was delegated to youth. Is this true, does it really have to be that way?
Back to my parents. Last summer they celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary. Their eyes sparkled as they walked into the celebration wearing matching shirts they wore on their honeymoon. The shirts were popping buttons as the threads had weakened through time, but not their love—it had only gotten tighter.
We have close friends. He is 91 and she 85. They both had lost their spouses to cancer and now they found each other in their sunset years and have been happily married for three. The spark is pronounced. They hold hands, tease, tastefully flirt and have been caught making out. This wipes away the idea that romance and the spark is somehow reserved for those in their prime of life. If the spark isn’t found only in the young, there must be a common “clue to the glue” — something that could make an already solid relationship even sweeter, one with perhaps not just a spark but full on fireworks. I have been pondering this thought for the past several weeks and even tested out my theory. Yes, the spark doesn’t have to leave, like a bonfire it needs to be stoked. A fire left unattended eventually dies. With a little attention scattered branches and coals can be returned to a hot blaze when rearranged and brought in close to each other.
It is easy to recall and pine. “Poor me, where are the long walks, the flowers, the romance…” not even considering how selfish those thoughts really are. What did I do to encourage the original spark? Ladies is it really all on him? No. The very same mouth that says “poor me” loudly pronounces, “He should love me for who I am”. Yes, and he does, but is that how you caught his attention in the first place? Is that truly love? Did you show up on a date in your PJ’s, a messy bun in your hair and smudged mascara? Did you throw fast food on the table or did you wear something cute and seek out his favorite dish and make it with pride. Did you nag him into doing something or did your happy sparkling smile draw him in so all the cares and burdens of the day were left on the back porch. It’s so easy to slip into routine and indifference, scattering the embers and letting them cool. It’s not worth it. As for me I’ve been wandering down memories lane as if it were an old textbook with the important points highlighted, a refresher course for fire building skills and guess what. The fire’s getting hotter!
When it comes to our relationship with Jesus, it’s not a whole lot different. Revelation warns “But I have this complaint against you. You don’t love me or each other as you did at first! Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don’t repent, I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches.” Revelation 2: 4 & 5 NLT Let us search deep into our hearts and let God fan the sparks within us into a hot blazing fire.