LOVE IS SO BLIND!
You’ve heard the phrase in songs, on the TV and weaved affectionately into conversation. The statement may be corny, but did you know it’s actually true?
Inside of a romantic relationship, you always see the best. Not only do you see the best, you tend to (at first) feel the best! The butterflies, the hormones, the emotions, the attraction - your brain releases these chemicals that literally mask bae’s faults and convince you they’re the greatest person in the universe - it's true! Ever seen a guy and girl together and thought “what is she thinking? He is SO bad for her!” It’s because love really is blind, and guess what? It’s SUPPOSED to be!
THE POWER OF LOVE IS POTENT & POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS IF MISUSED & ABUSED ON AN UNSAFE RELATIONSHIP PLATFORM
Those chemicals and hormones released in your brain (the way God designed you!) are supposed to help you love your life partner! Everybody has flaws and faults no matter what, so being blindly in love is the BEST when you’re in a safe committed relationship for life - it takes the edge off the daily grind and helps us CHOOSE to love that person every single day. This is “blind love” at it’s best. Great idea Jesus. And according to Andy Stanley's latest and greatest, *
Blind Love actually has a scientific name - it’s called “focalism”
It’s when your brain magnifies one thing to the exclusion of everything else. In other words, it distorts reality - in favour of that which we are focusing on. And before you get too high and mighty, you should know that we’ve all done it:
How many of us drive totally of the way just to get our favourite dessert or go-to snack? You know who you are. You had to have THAT specific one, right? You were having a craving and basically nothing else would do. You send mum to the shops to get that ONE PARTICULAR Ben & Jerry’s flavour and if the flavour aint right, it’s not ok. (If you bring me back New York Super Fudge Chunk when I want Chubby Hubby I will cut you….Jokes. Kind of. Ask my husband, he knows the consequences.)
Or we make that impulse purchase because we've somehow convinced ourselves that we NEED the shoes, and we don’t really think about anything else in that moment. We don’t think so much about the consequences of spending 2 week’s rent on what is essentially a covering for your foot. Sure, we can't afford breakfast - but at least we can look good while when we walk to the empty fridge in those new killer heels!
It focuses on that one thing we want, and ignores the reality surrounding it
While focalism is great for helping us love our marriage partner, it has the potential to trick us into making not-so-great decisions. That potential intensifies a lot in emotional environments. Like a relationship!
ROMANCE IS LIKE DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE
It’s very difficult to see clearly. Our inhibitions are lowered, our perspective is blurred and we can even put others in danger! In fact, we can become BLIND DRUNK to the reality around us.
“He’s cute. He said he loves me.” And suddenly our brain ignores the fact that he’s rude to his mum, disrespectful to other girls (except you) and doesn’t share your faith and beliefs.
Getting love-drunk might feel really GOOD in the moment - but you can make some real BAD decisions in that very moment too.
You’ll wake up with a relational hangover of pain, emptiness and regret - especially if you hurt someone else in the process
That’s why instead of BUILDING the relationship OFF THE EMOTIONS we FEEL, we must BUILD OFF reality we KNOW. So how do we do this? Let me answer your question with another question:
WHO CHECKS YOUR BLIND SPOT?
When we went on a recent family holiday, we’d stuffed the car with so much luggage that I couldn’t see out of my blind spot. It’s the one area of vision where your rear-view mirrors can’t help you. In order to change lanes and not DIE on the road you need to be able to see what’s coming up behind you and any potential threats - other cars, scooters, cyclists, etc. Every time you change lanes you have to turn around and check that blind spot, right? But I couldn’t see - there was too much stuff - I had to get my husband to check for me, because, from his angle, he could see what I couldn't see.
LESSON! GET YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, & PEERS TO CHECK YOUR BLIND SPOT!
If your mum, your friends, your class mates, your teachers don’t think it’s a good idea - PRESS THE PAUSE BUTTON. Seriously … take it into account. If everyone is getting weird about you two, it’s probably not the world against you. People's opinions aren't law, but they do matter.
THERE IS SAFETY IN COMMUNITY
There is SAFETY in family. Love really can be blind and that’s why we need PEOPLE AROUND US! From their angle, they can see what you can’t!
/// PROVERBS 27 : 6 ///
"YOU CAN TRUST A FRIEND WHO WOUNDS YOU WITH HIS HONESTY, BUT YOUR ENEMY'S PRETENDED FLATTERY COMES FROM INSINCERITY"
(The Passion Translation)
If people are getting uncomfortable, or if they can see something you don’t, LISTEN TO THEM! You don’t have to hang off their every word, but take it into account. Get them to check your blind spot. Get them to turn around and inspect - allow them to see what you can’t see! Permit them to look around and go “yep, you can go for it” or “hold up, just slow down a bit. It’s not safe yet”. It might not be a case of “he’s a horrible person don't go there”- it might simply be a case of “you’re going too fast, slow down, or someone is going to get hurt.”
Nowadays we’re often taught to think “oh mum and dad are out to get me, they don’t want me to be happy, they don’t understand…” But that’s not the godly picture. The godly picture of family is supposed to be a safety unit you can rest under - rest in your parents safety knowing they will guide you in SUCH an important area of life.
Now, we know some of us don’t come from “safe” families. Alternatively, some of us come from loving families, but they might not be built on godly principles. But I’m not just talking about our physical family - I’m talking about our spiritual family.
When you became a believer, you became a part of God’s family - the Church! It’s (we’re) supposed to be a safe refuge - a protective network of people we trust who will keep us accountable, point us toward God, and always desire the best for us. Your friends, pastors and leaders at church are the ones you need in your life to CHECK YOUR BLIND SPOT. People who are trustworthy with your heart. People you can be honest with. People who can watch over your life and see what you can’t see.
Because the reality is, especially when it comes to romance, there is PLENTY we can’t see.
We’re designed for community - it’s in our God DNA - and He created us to need each other in a healthy, interdependent way.
So who’s your blind spot checker? Who’s sitting in the passenger seat of your life, checking the road, identifying hazards, and letting you know when it’s ok to change lanes?
Yep, love is blind. But that impairment doesn't have to lead us into a car crash or relational disaster. Make sure you’re planted in godly community, under trustworthy leadership and are intentionally accountable with ya people. Then, when you meet that special Someone, you can have the ride of your life! (Was that cheesy? Probably…but who cares it fits with the theme.)
And don't forget your ULTIMATE blind-spot checker: the Holy Spirit. That's why He's here! The Father gave us the gift of choice, but He sent the Holy Spirit to guide, lead and compel those choices in a way that leads to life, love and JESUS!
THE HOLY SPIRIT ISN'T THE COP THAT PULLS YOU OVER WHEN YOU'VE BROKEN THE LAW - HE'S THE FRIEND THAT TELLS YOU WHEN YOU'RE DRIVING DANGEROUSLY
*the concept of “focalism” used from Andy Stanley’s book “The New Rules for LOVE, SEX & DATING”
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