What is Love? – A Poem

What is Love?
By Nichole Henry at age 16

What is Love?
Love is the strongest-
The most confusing feeling.

One moment I am elated to the highest point in the heavens,
My joy reaching to the very edges of the galaxy.
The next I am lying in bed,
Too stunned, hurt and sad even to cry.
I vow to give love up,
Then crumble at the next hint of its promise
I surrender to its power
Then cower in a corner when it turns its back on me.

I lose a friend and swear I’ll never have another-
Acquaintances are enough.
Then I blink and I have a friend
A real, perfect, loving friendship-
And I can already see signs of its end.
I see people I never wanted to see again
And hold tightly to the ones I have left,
Even as they slip through my fingers.

I turn around
And see more people standing there,
Smiling,
Covered in the hint of a promise.
I turn away,
Run as fast as I can in the opposite direction.
I won’t go through that pain again.
I can’t go through that pain again.

I glance over my shoulder to see how much distance I’ve gained,
And when I see no one,
Relief threatens to envelop me.
I stumble and fall.
A hand reaches out of the darkness to help me,
And as I grasp it gratefully I can see the people I was running from,
Surrounding me and caring for me,
Loving me.

I wonder,
Is it possible to escape love’s vicious cycle?
Is there anything I can do.
And then I remember
Why this earthly love has always failed,
Why it always breaks its promises
Why it never lasts.
I wonder why it took me so long.

I remember the stories I was taught
Of the day sin and death entered the world.
How sin coats everything,
Fills everything,
Consumes everything,
Controls everything,
Destroys everything.
Of course this love always ends!

We are sinful beings
Our love is a sinful love.
It is a selfish love,
A dependent love,
An ending love,
A betraying love.
I fall to my knees crushed under the awful reality-
If my love is sinful then it will always fail.

Always,
Every time-
With no exceptions.
I wonder if anywhere there is a perfect love
A love that never dies,
Never leaves,
Never ends.
And then I remember the One who’s Name is Love.

He never changes,
He always has been
And always will be.
His name is the Keeper of Promises,
Gracious Father,
Savior of an evil people.
And He offers perfect love-
For nothing.

I wonder what took me so long to remember
My Creator and Savior,
My Redeemer and Friend.
I turn to the One
Who’s perfect love casts out all fear,

Who is always ready to forgive,
Who’s love is unchanging and unyielding
Before my utter unfaithfulness.

I remember how His love conquered death,
And consequently how death cannot end His love.
I look to Love
And find ever-flowing,
Never ending,
Never changing,
Pure, full, perfect
LOVE!

And I change.
My love can also be perfect.
I need no longer fear to love,
For I have been bought by the Perfect Love,
The Love of Christ Jesus my Lord.
And nothing-
No one,
Can snatch me out of love’s Hands.

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