One Shade of Red

Valentine’s Day is this weekend, and while I actually kind of hate the Hallmark holiday of “love” (because Saint Valentine was a martyr and that seems like a weird thing to relate to flowers and chocolates), I felt the need to write a bit on the subject, mostly because the movie “Fifty Shades of Grey” is released the same day, and the mere existence of that movie reveals how very misunderstood the idea of “love” really is in our world.

I have never read nor will I ever read the books of the Gray series, and I won’t be watching the movie. I can’t think of a greater waste of time. But the plot is basic enough, and I know enough about it to write why I think what I do. And if I may be so bold, I know a lot about the topic of love, real love, not the cheap and twisted version that’s touted in books and movies like Fifty Shades of Gray.

You see, I know what real love is because I am loved by the One who died for me when I rejected him, I am loved by the One who gave me everything and asked for nothing in return, I am loved by the One who is Love. And because of him I have a husband who, by the grace of the One who is Love, loves me the right way.

Because there is a “right” way to love. And there are wrong ways that we call “love” but really aren’t anything close.

And everything about Fifty Shades of Gray is wrong. It is lust. And lust is the antithesis of love.

Lust is demanding. But Love is patient and kind.

Lust is fleeting. But Love never ends and it endures all things.

Lust is about self-gratification. But Love does not seek it’s own way.

Lust seeks perversion increasingly. But Love rejoices in the truth and what is right.

Lust exists in darkness. But Love is bathed in light.

So, while lust has it’s hooks of attraction deeply embedded in our world, we don’t have to accept it. We don’t have to accept that the relationship depicted in Fifty Shades of Gray is “ok”, because it’s not. We don’t have to accept this perverted version of love. We can instead look at real love, we can instead look to that singular shade of red that means everything as it drips from the hands and feet and side of Jesus, who’s love is so great that it held him to a cross for a world of broken sinners.

That’s the only love worth pursuing, and anything less than that is a poor, gray forgery, nothing like the vibrant red of reality.

So, I think it goes without saying, if you were even considering seeing Fifty Shades of Gray, don’t. I urge you to steer clear of the many forgeries of love, and look to the real thing, to the Author and Creator of love who embodied it in his death for you.

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