“I love you because you are mine.”

Friday is for Heart Songs

My Bride at the Arboretum in April 2010
My Bride at the Arboretum in April 2010 

I was washing my face at the bathroom sink when I started to weep at a thought that flew through my heart. I was thinking about an upcoming meeting with my daughter, a daughter birthed before I was a Christian, before I was married, before I was a pastor, who has held my heart in her life since the day she was conceived. I was thinking of seeing her, at the table enjoying fellowship with my wife, and her half brother and sisters in just a few weeks when she is coming for a visit.

I imagined looking up at my wife and enjoying the glance of her blue eyes and the knowledge that this meeting was an answer to prayers we had prayed for 26 years. It was then that I understood something my 26-year-bride has said to me numerous times in answer to the insecure question I have asked her for the whole of our marriage, “Why do you love me?”

Her answer, “Because you’re mine.”

Washing my face, the tears began to flow as the weight and wisdom of what she said hit me. “I love my daughter, I love all my children, I love my wife because they are mine and that will never change. Their looks will change, their jobs will change, their size will change, their location and likes and dislikes and health and countless other things will change but this will not, THEY ARE MINE.

But my wife says and means more when she says to me “I love you because you are mine.”

“I love you because you’re mine.”

She means that she recognizes and receives me as given to her by God. I’m the one for her. She is the one for me. These children, our three and my heart-holding daughter from before I believed, these are gifts from God. They are ours and we love them with an intensity that borders on idolatry. And that is the danger and delight of all God’s gifts. We are tempted to love the gifts more than the giver and to replace the giver in our affections with the gifts.

But that’s not really the direction I want to take this post. I want to stay with the wonder of being loved because you are owned.

For Christians, this is the stunning wonder of our faith.

We are not our own, we have been bought by the blood of Christ. He purchased us and He owns us and the owning of us is His demonstration of love for us (Romans 5:8; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20). That is mesmerizing truth. That is eye-leaking joyous truth to celebrate and tell and live out everyday.

He loves us, because we are His. And that is never going to change. Ever.

9 thoughts on ““I love you because you are mine.”

  1. Good piece, Marty. It also tugged at my heart. I feel that way about all of our children. I have a special place in my heart for our first-born grandson…even though things were ‘out of order’ and he came before he had a dad, I love him, and he will always be special in a way that none of the others will…And he is mine…Blessings, Sharon


  2. Marty, thank you for sharing once again your human-ness. Each of us, before becoming the property of our Lord and Savior, was an ordinary person doing ordinary things. What matters for eternity is that now we have become HIS! He loved us before we were His, but now we can submit to Him and live as His children.


  3. Precious!

    Being loved: that is what changes EVERYTHING!!!!

    When we truly begin to understand how He LOVES us, everything else falls into the correct perspective. My worldview has to be from the eyes of one loved by God. Only then does the world make sense. Only then do I understand my place in it. Only then can I be salt and light.

    Thank you so much! Beautiful written. New reader.

    Love this: How He Loves Us!! (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geHF1zbA25U)


  4. Dear Pastor Marty,
    I remember sitting in your office many years ago when my ex was going to abort my daughter and I needed councel. Of course you were always there for me and I thank you for making a man out of me and telling me to get to the hospital because she was my daughter also. I don’t know if you remember all of this but I do. You told me the story of a daughter you had but that you have not seen in years. I just wanted you to know that I remember all of this. Your story brought tears to my eyes as I thought of Kelly my dear daughter that is with Jesus. I love all of you as brothers and sisters in Christ. I will be praying and thinking of you during these times in your life.

    Mike Gregoire in Ottawa, IL


  5. Marty, great post brother! Makes me stop and reflect upon the majesty of all of God’s gifts. Thanks for sharing and tell Steph thanks for sharing her wisdom. Love you guys… Terry


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