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When I think about my past, I can easily get caught up in feeling sorry for myself. As a Sanguine personality, I have been deeply hurt by people who didn't think I was all that Wonder-full. Especially hard to handle are the relationships that seemed to start off well but ended badly.

Over the years I have asked myself why certain people didn't love me or just stopped. And I have formally and informally counseled people over the years who have asked themselves the same question. Of course, I have crooned along with Garth Brooks about the blessings of unanswered prayers with respect to some of those failed relationships! But some of them have been much harder to get over–like the relationships I'm still in but aren't anywhere near what I'd hoped they would be.

Recently I exchanged my woe-is-me attitude about not being loved for a wow-for-me one. Where I once felt bypassed by God in the lack of some of these loving relationships, I now feel God's blessing in them. Of course, with time and maturity has come the realization that I'm better off without some of these people in my life. But even those disappointments that I haven't been able to assign to this category I now see as a gift. Why?

When it comes to relationships, I have to be motivated to pursue them. In the past, I have frequently found myself satisfied with the number of people in my life. At those times, I did nothing to pursue new relationships and wasn't very responsive to any invitations from others during those times. But when the old friendships were gone, I was suddenly very motivated! I am not suggesting that being unloved is a gift simply in that it motivates one to meet new people. The true gift is much more valuable.

If I had been loved by all those people who didn't love me and if they still loved me even now, I would have missed the greatest love of all. And no, Whitney Houston, the greatest love of all isn't learning to love yourself. The greatest love of all is being loved by someone who knows you, really knows you, and still never stops loving you. If I had had my fill of the appetizers of these other relationships, I never would have had room for the most incredible main course and dessert. I would have said, "No thanks" to the love my Savior had for me. As it is, I came to Him hungry for love and I'm still hungry for more.

Thank you, God, for not allowing us to be satisfied with anything but Your love.

"The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness." (Jeremiah 31:3)

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