After losing her first baby early in pregnancy, another daughter learned that she was pregnant again. She confided, "I'm afraid to let myself be happy. What if I lose this baby, too?"
I had to look my daughters each in the eyes and tell them. "You can't guard your heart from pain. Loving someone always opens your heart to the possibility of pain. There are no assurances."
We know, if we walk with God for very long, that we have the theological and Biblical promise that God never leaves us. We know when the storms of life come - and they will - God will help us stand strong.
But it doesn't change the reality and depth of pain in our lives. Love hurts, sometimes. Actually, the blessings of love are usually intermingled with pain. We can be hurt most by those we love the most.
I am thankful for the ultimate love offered to me by God. He bought us all by offering his son on the cross.
"But God showed his great love for us
by sending Christ to die for us
while we were still sinners."
He died for us knowing that we were steeped in sin and that even after turning to Him we would turn away at times. We would choose to be unfaithful or deny Him - even after knowing His love.
When Jesus chose his twelve disciples, he knew one would betray him to death - for money. He even knew his name - Judas.
Marriage and parenthood are not assurances for perfect love that never disappoints. Life happens. But, if we close our hearts to the opportunities to love, we close our hearts to great blessings.
No matter what happens in life or what we fear losing, there is one thing we can never lose.
For I am convinced
that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor heavenly rulers,
nor things that are present, nor things to come,
nor height, nor depth,
nor anything else in creation
will be ale to separate us
from the the love of God
in Christ Jesus our Lord.