Declaration of love

Because on Valentine's day, I need to say this publicly. Maybe it’s just for the benefit of my own heart. Maybe you will join me in the declaration too.

On the day my boss, mentor, friend, brother, got cancer, I stood on a beach in the dark in tears, looked up at the stars and declared:

“Jesus I still love you.”

On the day I sat in my lecture hall wondering why I was learning about Shakespeare when there were people in the world dying, as I struggled to connect being at uni with the things that I felt mattered, I chose to dig in to my degree and declare:

“Jesus I still love you.” 

On the day the hospital calls and your friend receives news that they need to go home, now, we gather as a student group weeping and praying for the things that hurt because when the family hurts we all feel it. And so through the pain we declare:

 “Jesus I still love you.”

On the day you feel discouraged, because you are too young, too naive, too passionate, too excited, under-qualified, over-stretched, with too much responsibility, or too little time, stressed by the expectation, the pressure, feeling on your own, feeling in demand... no matter the list stacked against us, we will say:

“Jesus I still love you.” 

We may have had the hardest week. You may have walked the longest road. Life may feel like one big injustice, good people taking bad hits, the chaos, the confusion, the big question-marks over the future. 

And so I want to say, I get you. I’m with you. No pretense, no smiley face. Yes, stuff hurts and the hits can fall hard. Since it’s Valentine’s day and meant to be about loving people, I just wanted to declare, in total honesty, that following Jesus is not easy. Knowing and loving God does not give you any guarantees of life sailing by smoothly. 

I have given my whole life to Jesus with my eyes wide open that the road is hard and stuff hurts. But I also want to declare, that I wouldn’t change this life I’m living for the world. Trusting the whole reason for my existence into the hands of Jesus means that when the hits come, as they do for us all in this world, I know I am not alone, I know a power within me that hits back harder than anything thrown at me. I know I am loved even when everything else fails.

So on Valentine’s day, I declare in my weakness with all sincerity:

“Jesus I still love you.”

Perhaps you have your own declaration to make today? Use the comment box below, there’s power in just saying it like it is.

Miriam Swanson

Global Student Mission Leader

Miriam helps equip the church for student mission internationally. She's based in the USA and hungry to see young adults follow Jesus with all of who they are. 

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