Dear John

WARNING – SPOILER ALERT!

Like most of the breathing female population, I could hardly wait to see Dear John. I should probably qualify that statement. Having sobbed uncontrollably watching, The Notebook, I decided that I am not a Nicholas Sparks fan. My distaste for the author, however, was outweighed by Channing Tatum’s starring role as John.

The movie started out normally and was enjoyable, almost to the end. The inevitable, “Dear John” letter was shocking, but the ensuing revelation about whom Savannah married was even more so. I was thunder struck at her choice to dump John for Tim. Walking out of the theater all I could do was shake my head and say, “Tim!?! Really!?!” Despite my disappointment, I left with a profound awareness of the depth and selflessness of John’s love for Savannah.

The movie’s underlying theme of genuine love is astounding. If we could not only grasp the magnitude of what John did, but live our lives like that, we and everyone around us would be so much better for it. When John returns from overseas for his father’s funeral he discovers not only who Savannah married, but that her husband is dying of cancer. Savannah tells John about an experimental treatment that might prolong Tim’s life.
In the midst of his grief, John sells his recently deceased father’s precious coin collection and anonymously donates the money to fund Tim’s treatment. Incredible!

Many of us, in similar circumstances would lash out in anger but that is not what Christ has called us to do. We are to walk in love, no matter the circumstances. Love is not just some fluffy, feel good emotion. Walking in love requires us to make the hard choices, walk the less traveled path, and sometimes even love through our own crippling pain.

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