What Real Love Is


Dear Indie Girl,

In my first year of college, I was a mess with questions about love. I’d never really been the dating type in high school. I didn’t really see the point to be honest. Both my siblings went away to college and found people who fit them perfectly, so that’s exactly what I intended to do.

It was my first experience with dating and my first heart break. I remember sitting down with a friend afterward and saying, “I need to learn what love is. If not now, then when?!”

It was in the middle of this season that Jesus met me in a dream that would haunt me for years and change my life.

I was dressed in a fancy old dress in a historical old theatre sitting on a bench talking to a very attractive man dressed in a black suit. His hair was long and brown, and even though he was dressed up as I was, he looked weathered, like a man who worked outside. I was telling him my life story, just pouring out my heart to him like we were best friends. The way he listened made me feel so loved. He cared about every detail I told him.

After some time, he got up and said, “I have to go away for a while.”

“Can I come too?”

“No,” he responded gently, “Not now.”

As he walked over to the exit, I followed him. Before he opened the door he picked me up and spun me around just like a scene from an old romance movie. Before he set me down again he kissed me just below my neck, like he was kissing my heart. As he was about to leave, he looked into my eyes and said, “I’m going to show you what real love is.” And he was gone. And that’s when I woke up.

As I opened my eyes, they were fixed already on a poster that hung in my room. It was a sketching of Jesus’ face. My eyes were locked on his eyes. All morning I was haunted by the man in my dream. I knew him, but who was he? A famous actor? A family friend? I thought for hours about this until I stared again at the poster on my wall. It was Jesus. Jesus had met me in my dream to tell me not to worry about finding love. That he’d show me what real love is. And he did. He faithfully showed me what love is. And what it is not. And he still does.

Thinking about this dream still brings me to tears. It is one of my most precious memories. If you’re questioning the idea of love, wondering how you know what it is, when you’ve found it, and when to hold on to it. If you’re afraid you’ve lost it, and it will never forgive you, or never find you again. Ask the one who embodies love. The God who is Love. Ask him to show you. And he will! I pray he’ll meet you in your dreams as he did me. And I pray it will haunt you until you put a name to the face of love.