Thursday, May 3, 2018

What I know about getting kissed

When I was in seventh grade, this boy I had a crush on tried kissing me. I put my hand over my mouth and shook my head. I had a pretty big crush on the boy, but letting him put his mouth on mine seemed like a serious step I wasn't ready to take. 

I thought I may wait and start kissing boys when I was 16. But by the time I turned 16, Jesus was showing me He loved me like those boys in high school never could, so I told Him I wouldn't kiss any of those boys if He'd help me.
And He helped me. 

 Now I'm 30 and kiss-less as far as normal kissing goes. But there's another kind of kissing I'm quite engaged in and it's the God-leaning-down-and-kissing-me-right-on-the-heart kind. 

In the Swiss Alps, between sunshine and snow, He kissed me. He's kissed me in India with kids' big hugs and in Thailand with open hearts excited about the Gospel and in Hong Kong with a family made of three African nations. He raised me on a farm in the United States and kissed me with a mom and dad and sisters and grandparents and cousins and a thousand healthy relationships. He just sent me on a road trip through Europe with best friends and kissed me every mile (and kilometer). 

I’m so romantic. And the reason is this; I’m made in my Maker’s image. I’m like Him. God is romantic.

For my 30th birthday, someone bought me a two-week vacation in Europe. Why? Not because I deserve it. But because He likes kissing me. 

It wasn’t necessary to give me two weeks of nothing but fun and cheese and bread and coffee. I didn’t deserve the hike through the Swiss Alps or the all-you-can eat Brazilian meat in Portugal or the complimentary Swiss chocolate on the flights. But God likes being extravagant. He enjoys shocking us with kindness, smothering us with kisses. 

Six countries in two weeks, driving a little red rental car through western Europe with two girls who are best friends and heroes, that was His idea for us. Wow! Kisses! 

In this tiny country called Andorra (which we didn't know existed but when we discovered it, we knew we had to go), we ate in a warm restaurant with wooden walls and lots of windows and ate cheese fondue (that means lots of bread and meat dipped in rivers of melted cheese). We used the money dad gave us for “a nice meal in Europe.” Sitting there all cheesy and warm, God planted a kiss right in my heart. 

Zurich, Switzerland's train station had my favorite perfume store so we could cover ourselves in sample perfume and lotion. As we explored the city, our hearts were filled with God's kiss. And we smelt really good.

We received a half-off discount seatbelt ticket in Spain from the cop with his cheeks squished together in his big cop helmet. We were in the back of the airport shuttle van, without seatbelts because who wears a seatbelt in the back of an airport shuttle van, when the big-helmet cop pulled the van over. He peeked into the backseat where Kelley Roo and I sat seatbelt-less, took our passports, and asked if we were friends. We told him we were friends and smiled big. Then the big-helmet cop said he'd only charge us for one ticket instead of two, so he'd go ahead and take our 100 Euro payment right now.
 I handed him my credit card and Jesus kissed me. 

Going through immigration in Switzerland, the watching-the-x-Ray-screen people soon discovered I forgot my awesome (and pretty fancy) flip-blade knife in my carry-on so they called down their supervisor who took my passport and escorted me to the police station. It was kinda fun. Turns out that owning a flip-blade knife is illegal in Switzerland, and trying to carry one onto an airplane is double illegal. The Swiss police were nice and I think they liked me. After having me sign some sorta papers, they let me get on the airplane but I didn’t get my cool knife back. Hopping on the plane, without my knife and without handcuffs on, Jesus kissed me. 

Sometimes kisses from Him are covered up by my self-pity, unstable emotions, unfortunate circumstances or just downright selfishness. Everyone has hard moments and hard days, but even in the midst of the hard, if we’ll look around, we’ll be able to see God kissing us.

A kiss is intimate. To kiss, you got to get close. God wants this kind of relationship with us. 

It's how mankind got it's start, kissing. God put His mouth on Adam's lifeless body and breathed. Adam opened his eyes, saw God's big smiling mouth close to his, and probably smiled back. 
God's been kissing people ever since. 

 Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

-Genesis 2:7