Jesus vs. Juan Pablo: He loves, he loves not

I'm doing it again. I'm blogging about The Bachelor. Maybe I should make this a thing that I do...but then again, maybe not.

 Creative Commons photo by   Peter Camyre

 Creative Commons photo by Peter Camyre

Juan Pablo's season finale was tonight. My goodness, this season. "MOST DRAMATIC SEASON EVER." "SHOCKING FINALE." "YOU'VE NEVER SEEN A FINALE LIKE THIS." Okay, okay.

It's a TV show. It's not reality. It's a fantasy, it's a few weeks for heaven's sake, it's all rainbows and roses and lots of making out. And at the end of it all, Chris Harrison spent the whole post-finale show grilling Juan Pablo about why he wouldn't say he loved Nikki, the girl who got the final rose.

His logic was this: how he feels is private. How he feels doesn't need to be shared with the world. How he feels doesn't need to be told to anyone but Nikki.

On one hand, I respect that. It isn't real life when you're flying around the world on a show with so many other women, and I have to respect and totally understand that he might not totally know if he loves her yet or not.

But if he does really love her? And he still doesn't want to talk about it or let the public know, because he thinks it should be secret and private?

I feel differently when it comes to love.

I'm a Christian. I have a relationship with Jesus Christ. And if you were to sit me down on a plush couch surrounded by candles and roses and a studio audience and ask me if I loved this person I'm in a relationship with, I would absolutely say yes. It would be a big, bold, resounding, exciting, passionate, whole-hearted, big fat YES. I would repeat it over and over, beaming from ear to ear, giddy and overflowing and full of uncontainable joy. I wouldn't hide it. I wouldn't say it didn't matter to anyone else. I wouldn't say it was something I should just keep between me and Him.

When you love someone deeply and truly, you love them out loud. You want to shout it from rooftops. You want to tell your mom and your cousins and any stranger who happens to look at you on the street. You don't want to be secretive about it, you don't want to be sneaky, you don't want to beat around the bush.

My point is not to bash Juan Pablo. He's had enough of that on Twitter already. My point is that love shouldn't be just in secret. Superficial "love" might be something you want to keep hush-hush, so when (not if) it fails, it's not a big ordeal. But real love? True love? The love of a gracious, good, glorious Father? That is absolutely one love that should never be kept inside or hidden from the world.

Reality television "love" may be glamorous, but real, sacrificial, go to a cross to give it all up for you love, that's extravagant. That's real. That's agape love.

Jesus came from heaven to earth to be crucified and buried to show his love for us, paying the ultimate sacrifice out of perfect love and redeeming us when He rose again so we could live in love with Him forever. We should shout that love out as loud as we can. Not on street corners with big signs and Bibles thumping, but in the way we love, in the way we serve, in the way we live. We should go the ends of the earth and every corner of our neighborhoods, proclaiming His name, sharing His heart, sacrificing much and worshipping in all. 

It won't be a free vacation around the world, jet-setting from one exotic location to the next, all-expenses-paid with a camera crew and lots of crazy dates. It will be hard, it will be exhausting, it will be lonely, and it will be so very worth itThere won't be a rose waiting at the end, there will be heaven. There won't be a man on one knee, there will be a Savior with open arms. There won't be interviews and front page stories, there will be worship and unending praise.

I want to love my Lord out loud. No secrets, no hiding how I feel, no skirting around the issue. That might be how a Bachelor would do it, but this believer is doing it differently.