Relate: I have a guilty pleasure. I like to read a lot. No, that isn’t the guilty pleasure. It is just setting the stage. If you jump down on the right side of this blog you can see stuff on my “to read” list. Find the donate button, then scroll down. If you are on Goodreads, then you can not only see what I am reading but also get reviews of almost all of them once I have finished. At last check, I’ve rated 864 books that I have read and reviewed 213 of them. So yes, I do tend to read a lot.
But no, reading isn’t my guilty pleasure. Reading Nicholas Sparks is my guilty pleasure. I don’t know too many guys that are willing to admit to something like that. Once or twice a year I’m going to get my hands on something along the lines of Dear John or A Walk To Remember or A Bend In the Road and lose myself in it for a day or two. I don’t know any other author who seems to embody today’s verse in his writing more than Sparks. He gets two people to fall in love and then throws the book at them… quite literally. How will this couple survive the time, distance, differences, and disastrous circumstances he will throw their way? Ladies, I’m sure many of you know exactly what I’m talking about. Guys, man up. Find some closet space, grab a book, get in there and read it whenever nobody’s around. You’ll be glad you did. (I’m just not sure how glad I am to admit that.)
React: What distinguishes great literature and cinema from the ordinary is that it manages to illustrate an eternal truth or longing that resonates within each one of us. A common theme for Hollywood is that we were made for something more. We have an untapped potential and a cause worth fighting for. (Think Avengers, Hunger Games, Lincoln, Hobbit, Dark Knight, Spiderman, Brave…) Another theme often laced through these movies, a theme that Sparks is so much more blatant in developing is that there is a love worth fighting for. For Batman it’s a city, Spidey fights for Mary Jane and Katniss for Primrose. Bella can’t make up her mind who she’s fighting for and she sure has a lot of angst but apparently, everyone else in the Twilight universe believes Bella is worth fighting for.
There is a love worth fighting for. No, not just Bella, I am talking about the real thing. There is a love worth sacrificing everything for. It is your love. He sacrificed the comfort and luxury of heaven. He traveled the ends of the universe to become someone like you. He chose to wander homeless, often not knowing where the next meal was coming from in the hopes that what he said and did would somehow grab hold of your soul and capture your heart. Ultimately he willingly laid down his life, dying an excruciating death so that you might be free. His love never gives up and never loses faith. He still holds out hope and he has endured every circumstance to demonstrate his love for you. After all that, will you love him in return?
I am so thankful that You fought for me. You bled and died out of love for me. When I think of You, and then I look at me… it is mind-boggling. It should have been the other way around. You are the one worthy of love and adoration. I’m just… me. I know You’ve done all the work. You’ve done all the heavy lifting, but help me to love You more. Help me to live with even a shadow of the incomparable devotion You have showered on me. Help me to follow You a little better. Help me to love You a little more.