Our expectations of people sometimes is that they love us with an everlasting love. There have been numerous songs down through the years that have promised this kind of love in the melodies, and this sets up young couples to be looking for that in relationships. "If you love me, you will love me to the exclusion of all else."
Oh the lovely, youthful dreamy world of hoping someone will commit to love us forever. But it's unrealistic. Only one is capapble of this kind of love. Real human commitments require some work. Everlasting love is not a given! We do however push through the times when our children for instance seem unlovely. If you feel like your child doesn't love you, maybe they don't. But by a commitment, to accept that God the Father promises the he is capable of everlasting love, we can continue to wait for human love to rebloom.
A super thing about this is - we can enter commitments with our human love relationships, putting less pressure on the covenant, from the very beginning, if we only expect that God alone can give love everlasting. Sometimes we are hurt by someone not living up to our expectations, when we really need to step back and consider that it is the impossible dream to place on another person - the burden of filling this unfailing love. We need everlasting love. But people can't give it. WE NEED IT, but only God can give it!
I know I am repeating myself. I want it to stick in my own mind as much with anyone.
I have learned to say to my husband, "if you loved me...you would make a different choice." It is actually a realistic response to hurtful things that the people we love do in a thoughtless manner. It is OK to ask our partners, children and parents to take a second look at how their choices affect our opiinion of their love. But it isn't ok to use this opportunity to manipulate someone to prove their love. God also doesn't use that love to manipulate us.. I noticed one day that a young lady on a reality show, said "if you loved me, you would do this." She was asking something unrealistic. Books have been written around the manipulative form of having expections of someone and call it love. I have seen mothers in grocery stores use this tactic. That kind of discussion is so much the opposite of God's promise. He makes the commitment to love us with everlasting love, with no attatchments, and without the tie of expecting us to love him with a love so grand.
Sometimes I think, people never really get this. Human love must go through stages of growth and release, all kinds of intensities, and can be questioned at every turn. Really loving like God loves, is to allow that the person we focus our love on, to be a person, not a God. Allow them to fall short, and then tell them what you thought would happen, and what, about their actions was different than you expected. Then, without hesitation, say, I know you can't read my mind. Explain to me why you thought your choice was meant to show me love." You might be surprised when you see what they were thinking.
"I have loved you with an everlasting Love..." Jeremiah 31:3
Lord, help me not to place unreal expectaions on those I love and want to love me. Help me mirror your love, but also realize that I too cannot love with an everlasting love. Help us all refer our children to the perfect, everlasting love of God, but make it clear to them, that we will never expect them to fill some giant hole in someone else's love deficit. IN Jesus Name, AMEN