A Love Story Better Than Pride and Prejudice

With Valentine’s Day just recently past, this seems like a good time to interrupt our not-so-regularly-scheduled “Approach the Throne” series and do a little post about love.

Pride and Prejudice is one of the most iconic romance stories in our culture. Most people know Lizzy and Mr. Darcy and have enjoyed reading and watching as they fall in love – in spite of their numerous obstacles and misunderstandings.

One of my favorite parts in Pride and Prejudice is Mr. Darcy’s first proposal to Lizzy. It ends up being a train wreck, and he inserts a lot of prideful insults regarding her family situation and so on, but he starts off with that iconic statement, “‘In vain I have struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you'” (Austen, Chapter 34).

Honestly, who could resist that? (Good thing Lizzy did, though, or neither of them would have learned to be humble). Still, kudos to Mr. Darcy for a good beginning.

One of the things I like to do when I’m having trouble remembering how God loves me is to take my favorite lines or situations from stories and compare them to what God says about His feelings for me. Perhaps it’s dorky, but it is effective.

Let’s try taking this iconic statement of Mr. Darcy’s and comparing it to what God says to us. The first thing that stands out to me is the phrase, “You must allow me to tell you.” Our God is a gentleman; He won’t shout at you while you have your hands over your ears. You’ve got to allow Him to tell you how much He loves you – and I say this as someone who is really bad at listening.

The next thing that stands out is the intensity of Mr. Darcy’s statement. You can hear how desperate he is for Lizzy to know he loves her, how much he wants her to accept his proposal. God speaks to us with the same intensity, holding out His hands and longing for us to turn and see the truth of His love (see Romans 10:21).

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Please be sure to view this image on the Full of Eyes website. Many thanks as always to them for their ministry.

Can you hear it? “You must allow me to tell you…”

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Please view this image, “There is a Fountain,” on the Full of Eyes website.

“…how ardently I admire and love you…”

The “love” part of this statement is easy to translate to our relationship with God, but what about the “admire” part? While I don’t think it applies to our relationship with God in the same way Mr. Darcy used it, I do know that when we join God’s family and accept Christ as our Savior, we are covered with Christ. God sees us as we are, yet He treats us the way He treats His Begotten Son, saying “I am well pleased” when He looks at us even as He did when He looked at Jesus (Matthew 3:16-17, ESV).

Mr. Darcy’s statement also reminds me of one of my favorite Bible verses, Isaiah 54:10: “‘For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but My steadfast love shall not depart from you, and My covenant of peace shall not be removed,’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you” (ESV).

Have you ever tried inserting your name into a Bible verse? I know it sounds a tad corny, but just give it a shot…”For God so [greatly] loved and dearly prized [your name here], that He [even] gave His [One and] only begotten Son” (John 3:16, AMP). You know how that verse ends: He gave His Son so that you could be with Him forever. Mr. Darcy proposed because he couldn’t bear to be without Lizzy; in a much, much greater way, God doesn’t want to be without you, either.

I’ll close with a lovely section from the Song of Solomon: “Love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the Lord. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised” (Song of Solomon 8:6-7, ESV).

I hope this post has been meaningful to you and reminded you how much God loves you. If you find music to be helpful to you, I highly recommend the songs “This Love Doesn’t Run” by Kerrie Roberts and “Remind Me Who I Am” by Jason Gray. Happy Valentine’s Day, my friends.

 

Austen, Jane. Pride and Prejudice. Kindle ed, Amazon Digital Services LLC, 2012.

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Cosplay Showcase: Stephanie Rogers (Fem Steve Rogers)

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Hi there, and welcome to my first Cosplay Showcase post, in which I share my finished cosplay projects with you. 🙂

It seems fitting that my first Showcase should be about my very first cosplay, one that I affectionately dubbed Stephanie Rogers because it’s a female interpretation of the character, Steve Rogers.

This particular cosplay is based on one of Steve’s casual costumes in The Avengers movie.

While not my favorite cosplay that I’ve done, this one is special for two reasons. First, as I mentioned, it was the very first cosplay I did. At the time, I purposely selected it because it’s fairly easy to make (you just gotta find the right clothing items; no sewing required).

The second reason is, Steve Rogers is possibly the pop culture character that I identify with the most, in terms of personality and values. He’s just a great, noble character to represent.

So, without further ado, here’s my Stephanie Rogers cosplay!

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Favorite memory in this cosplay: Meeting a legit Captain America cosplayer at a con

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When the weight of a country rests on you…

Favorite thing about this cosplay: Um…the giant shield?! Also the chance to represent a great character.

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Getting a little creative with the photo filters 😉

Changes in mind for this cosplay: None! While many of my cosplays feel like works-in-progress, even when they’re “done,” I think this one is great as is.

II: The Way the Arrow Flies

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I’ve learned that there are few problems that cannot be forgotten while at the archery range – unless, of course, that problem is my faulty aim.

This past week was a tough one, fraught with mountains to overcome and monstrous beasts to slay. In fact, there’s still one pesky beast hanging around to be dealt with in the coming days, which I’m not exactly looking forward to.

Needless to say, my mind was worn out, my body stiff, and I needed a chance to unwind. So I forced my weary self onto my feet, grabbed a bow, and headed for the archery range. There’s nothing like shooting targets to provide stress relief.

It might be necessary to make a slight detour here, just to provide some background info…I’m fairly certain that I’m an adopted elf (although my parents maintain this is not true). A number of things point to this possibility, such as my ability to walk so quietly I accidentally scare people when I enter a room. Also my obsession with everything Tolkien. And, usually, my accuracy with a bow.

When I first picked up a bow, the skill came somewhat naturally to me. Of course practice is still necessary, but I’ve gotten used to just being lucky.

That didn’t happen today. As my arrows kept going wide, hitting to the side, and generally landing off-target, I felt my tension mounting. Why couldn’t I live up to my former excellence? In my mind I could hear the snickers of the younger elflings around me, although in truth they weren’t even paying attention to my “failure.”

It wasn’t until my time was almost up that I decided to let go of my competitiveness. After all, what was it gaining me? So instead of aiming for the targets within my skill level, I shot for the easy ones – and felt myself relax a bit as my arrows landed in the center.

There was no point in adding to my stress by holding myself to some self-imposed standard. Eventually I headed home with a smile on my face, even though my performance hadn’t been what I expected. I gave myself permission to have an off day.

But next time, those bullseyes are mine.