Dear Broadview Family:
While the rest of the world was celebrating Valentine’s Day, we were focusing on an especially beautiful sort of love: the love for God.
It started with a conversation with a member of our Broadview community. She’s been praying for years about X, Y, and Z, but hasn’t seen progress. A few weeks ago, her frustration boiled over:
I’d been repeating the same spiritual truths to myself forever. Finally, I asked myself: what do I absolutely know is true? What popped out, to my surprise, was how much I love God. It’s literally the only thing I’m sure about. And it’s deeper than anything else. It’s been the driving force in my life since I was five years old.
For our friend, this was such a relief. Overnight, she regained the surpassing joy of loving God regardless of circumstances. To remind herself of that AHA moment, she’s now listening repeatedly to a powerful, version of a familiar hymn. “Consecrated,” recorded by Christian Science musician Wendy Remington, is about loving and serving God with all our hearts. Our friend’s favorite line is no surprise: “Take my love, O Lord, I pour / At Thy feet its treasure store.” 1
The nineteenth-century woman who wrote this hymn, Frances Ridley Havergal, also wrote the following:
It was on Advent Sunday, December 2nd,1873, I first saw clearly the blessedness of true consecration. I saw it as a flash of electric light, and what you see you can never unsee. There must be full surrender before there can be full blessedness. God admits you by the one into the other.2
Havergal also wrote of “renewal of the surrender” and “renewal of my own consecration,” suggesting the ongoing rhythm of her relationship with God. One night, in another burst of renewal and “too happy to sleep,” she penned the beautiful words of this hymn.
The friend who rediscovered her love for God also talks about surrender, renewal, and consecration. And she tells us:
My new-old love for God is like a campfire where I go 50 times a day to warm my hands and feet. I vaguely remember that X, Y, and Z aren’t healed. But by that little flame, I’m happy. I’m five. God’s here. For now, that’s enough.
Are you ready for renewal? Try listening to the bluesy version of Havergal’s hymn. Try feeling the childlike satisfaction of just loving God. It’s better than chocolate to linger in that elemental place where, as the hymn says, we’re “Ever, only, all for Thee.”
Marivic Bay Mabanag
1 Christian Science Hymnal, No. 324, arranged by Peter B. Allen.
2 Chris Fenner, “Take my life and let it be,” Hymnology Archive, 29 October 2018.