Friday, February 13, 2015

50 shades of g r a c e ...

it's about to be valentine's day. and everywhere we look there are all sorts of suggestions about how best to show love.

there's no doubt, i'm a sucker for this kind of stuff:  pink-heart-shaped-pancakes, lace-doily-love-notes, dark-chocolate-dipped-strawberries ... you get the idea.

last year, american express did a survey and predicted americans would spend over $37 billion dollars celebrating valentine's day. each household, would spend on their loved ones, an average of $213. i have no idea how they figure out that kind of stuff or how accurate it really is.
but even if they are off, say, a few billion dollars ... still .... kidding. me?

that's some expensive kind of love.

thankfully, in my house, we're more into the homemade version.

that was last year. i don't know what the predictions say about this year, but i do know that there's being a lot of money spent trying to lure people in to another costly{yes, costly} attempt to depict love.

this 50 shades thing.
it's everywhere, right?
this 50 shades of seduction.
this 50 shades  of strategy.
this 50 shades seductively and strategically opening it's doors of erotica on the weekend which epitomizes love.

and it breaks my heart to consider the numbers that this movie will pull in in the next 48 hours -- even in the name of love.

the trilogy book sales (over 100 million) have made the author, e.l. james, the highest paid writer ever. her net worth: over 60 million.

those numbers say a lot about what americans are willing to spend, valentine's day or not.

the synopsis: "this is the hotly anticipated film adaptation of the bestselling book that has become a global phenomenon."

"hot. anticipated.bestselling. has become. global. phenomenon." yikes -- how can any bouquet of roses or box of chocolates compete with those words?

it's not just deception in design, but corruption at its core.

and don't think for one moment that satan, the greatest seducer and strategist of all, isn't smiling wildly as the world does everything it can to point everyone it can in the direction of empty love.
no, not empty love. that's much too paradoxical, but emptiness.






death -- too strong a word?
i don't think so.

that's the devil's greatest desire for you ... an empty life without authentic love. and then an empty death.

we are talking about places of the heart, images in the mind and the longings of the spirit.

and it breaks my heart to imagine the faces of the young girls who will buy some of this kind of bleak love.

it breaks my heart to think of the lonely women and desperate daughters who will plunk down $11 dollars for two hours of deception.

what need pushes us to these places?
what desires drive us to this kind of darkness?
what apathy allows us to quietly accept?

i don't know if it's the lust of the flesh or if it's simply a lack of love.

both, probably.
we all know what it means to battle both: our flesh and our lack.

maybe i'm making too big a deal. maybe i'm just being incredibly prudish, closed-minded or even judgmental because this deals with a college girl and i happen to have one of those ... and i really don't want to imagine her trapped in a torrid, twisted, sexual relationship with a 27 year old billionaire who demands bondage.

yeah, maybe that.

by the way, wal-mart has a $69.99 gift basket that contains normal valentines things like — chocolate, cookies, bubble bath — plus "chrome-plated metal double lock handcuffs with key."
i know, classy, right?

i've heard people say, "what's the big deal?"  ... "don't judge!" ... "it won't hurt." 

i disagree.

i think it does hurt.
i think it does cost.
i think it does damage.

and i think because of that, it is a big deal.
i think it is big deal because i am raising three daughters.
it's a big deal what my girls hear and think and know and observe about this mysterious thing called love.

and it's a big deal because our world doesn't need any more gray-places, but more grace-places.

we don't need to walk on twisted paths or wallow in murky waters or wonder what lurks around the dark corners.
life will provide that without the willing swipe of our credit card.

we need light and life and truth and real love ... we need grace in the way we live ... and in the way we love others.

{grace}  webster defines:
1. simple elegance or refinement of movement.
2. the free and unmerited favor of God
3. do honor or credit to (someone or something)

i don't know a lot about this movie, but i'm pretty sure none of these definitions are going to fit.

love isn't about the color gray and the seduction of bondage, but about the color red which saves us from bondage. the red blood of Jesus which washes away the gray and gross and filthy places of our decaying flesh.

no matter what you're willing to spend on love this weekend -- and husbands, don't. you. be. stingy! -- i would hope that we all know that Jesus loves us so much He has already done what cost the most.

if you'd like to read or think more about His love for us, i'm including a link to a short series i did last february on {real love}.     {what real love is}


Jane Klingenberg said...

Thank you, Jody

Linda from CA said...

Great post and insight. I agree!

Anonymous said...


Tally said...

Love. Love. Love. And I’m with you…especially when it comes to the next generation of girls!!! Love this post!

B said...

Mmmm so good Jody! And so timely! Blessings!

Laurie said...

How I wish every young woman could read this! I could not agree more- soooo well said!

Sammy said...

Great post, and much needed in this time of trouble. : - ((