Fall was finally here again. It was a beautiful day, so the boys and I headed out to the park while some Hearty Bean Chowder was on the stove. It was good to be out there again, playing some soccer with the boys (I was in big need of some aerobic activity after the last couple weeks of rain and cold).
When we first cot down there, a young teenage boy rode his bike out into the middle of the park and sat on a picnic table. Not long after a young teenage girl rode up. Shortly they were walking toward the woods on the side of the park (not really woods, as they're only about five trees deep). Now I didn't go over to check out what they were doing, but I'm fairly certain that making-out was on the agenda (though with all the leaves missing off the trees, I'm not sure why they bothered--there wasn't much they could hide behind). After all, what else would two young teens of opposite genders be up to in the woods after school?
Remember your first crush--how exciting everything was? The thrill of just being around that person, the tingle down your spine from the touch of their hand on yours, the power the gaze from their eyes had on you.
Why do we let familiarity push out that excitement? Admittedly, there are few times when I recover that with my wife--though when I focus on her, and how amazing her love for me is, I can rekindle some of that awe.
The same goes with God. St. John warns the church at Ephesus in Revelation 2 that they have "forsaken their first love." We let our relationship with God become too commonplace that we forget how amazing His love for us is (or at least I do). We can take our relationship with our Savior, like our relationship with our spouse, for granted too easily.
Relationships require work if we want the most out of them--and if we want to give our best to the other person. We live in a culture where we want to get the most out of things while putting the least effort into them. There is no long-term satisfaction in that. If we want our loves (whether with a person or with God) to keep their thrill, we need to work on them (we also need to work on ourselves in the process, but that's another post).
So, if you have the opportunity, take your love and sneak off into the woods for a make-out session. And, take another trip with your Bible and prayer journal and spend some time with God as well. Rekindle those loves.