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Everything I was taught about love was a lie

I feel like my whole life is the pursuit of balance, and sharing findings if I ever get there. A lot of that pursuit is stripping down all the complications and "noise" of life trying to find core meaning.

I read a thousand psych books (ok listened on Audible but it still counts) and chiseled my body through nutrition and fitness. I went to church, Bible studies and Christian Mom groups. I had mentors both paid and otherwise. But something was still missing.

When I decided to read through the Bible last year, it was life changing. I knew a lot of it including large chunks of the Old Testament. But reading it cover to cover made me want to scream.

Ok, ok. Not the response you would expect. BUT hear me out.

People are leaving the Church in droves. Fleeing for their lives. From a place that is supposed to shine eternal life in Christ. People in foreign countries are DYING in defense of the Bible, yet those in the cushy circumstances of this country are alienating. It absolutely infuriates me trying to understand how the church can get it so wrong. And before you say "not all", yes I'm in a healthy one now. But the numbers are still appalling.

This wont go into the million things the church is doing wrong. Suffice to say, they really don't understand Jesus. Like, did you even READ the Bible you love to thump?!

But back to love. I was ALWAYS taught "love is an action not a feeling". Always. If you don't like the person you are with, just keep loving. Just keep sacrificing. Jesus was a doormat. All that jazz. But, oh yeah, God IS love and loves you!

Like WOAH. Did the Bible totally turn all of that on its head. All of that does NOT go with the actual Word. And if you still believe all that utter BULL or have left the church because of it, I'm so sorry you were failed and harmed by untruth.

Around the time I was finishing my cover-to-cover journey, I discovered a podcast by John Eldredge. He spoke a lot about the importance of emotional processing and healthy attachment. Why, if I had read and listened to so many "Christian" resources, had I never heard of the power of healthy emotions?

It was a huge wake-up call and, as I truly examined the Bible, everything I had learned about Jesus was challenged. He was anything BUT a doormat. He was completely authoritative, strong, and felt the full range of emotions. He wept, had righteous anger, he was passionate. Fully lion, fully lamb.

Love without emotion is just a laundry list of nothingness. But that's what the church tells abused women to do. That's what the church tells trauma victims. Just keep loving. Just keep being patient, kind, submissive. And it creates toxic numbness and the antithesis of real love. A bunch of broken zombies who are incapable of truly shining the nature of God.

I loved God from a very young age. But I didn't truly know HOW to love God or have intimacy with Him or anyone else. Due to trauma and emotional brokenness, I thought I could just numb the pain and be that "good Christian submissive woman". A shell of a person, never truly being able to understand what was missing.

You can do ALL the things in your life. You can be everything to everyone. But you will be missing out. The only way to love others, and to accept love, is to heal. To take baby steps towards understanding your own emotions. That God gave you. You need to break the belief that love is just an action. You need to break the belief that your emotions are bad or you can just go through life numb.

I'm not there yet. I have a long way to go. But I do know that now that I'm finally feeling, I'd never want to go back to numb. As much as some days are really hard discovering that I'm an empath in my heart of hearts, it's like I can finally see the world in color. I'm starting to understand intimacy and relationship for the first time in my life. I thought I loved my kids and husband before, but everything is so much deeper now. Holding them goes beyond comprehension.

I pray you find truth and healing. And that you truly see with your heart what love really is. After all, the Bible in summary is God loves you, so love God and love others. That's it. That's the meaning of life. And without healing, it's truly impossible.

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