We try to impress to win love – doing more and shining brighter. We highlight our good and hide our bad in hopes of having the love we desire. While this may win admiration, this does not bring true love.
Dressed to Impress
We all want to be loved and also fear not being lovable. And this fear leads us to play a part. What can we do to convince others to love us?
Early in a dating relationship, for example, we are very intentional about putting our best foot forward.
We get dressed up for each other and avoid certain touchy conversations. The first date is generally not the time to reveal our deepest darkest secrets.
We focus simply on having a good time and minimizing anything that would disrupt this mood.
While this may stir many warm and fuzzy feelings, this is not yet love.
In fact, what we often call love at this early stage is more accurately a description of our delight and enjoyment of each other.
And without taking anything away from this excitement, it is not yet mature love until we start seeing fully.
Warts and All
The door to true love opens when we can put all our cards on the table and be fully seen – warts and all.
Unfortunately, even well into our relationships, many of us are still trying to perfect our performance in order to win love.
But love does not come through our performance. It comes through the risk of being utterly exposed to each other.
Love sees our past mistakes and daily shortcomings – our tendency to mess things up and to bring unimaginable heartache. At the same time, it sees our gifts and abilities to bring goodness and delight into the world.
Nothing is hidden from love. And the depth and power of love is limited when we hide behind our efforts to impress.
Love sees all – the good, the bad, and the ugly – without being swayed by what it sees.
It sees into the depths of our being and still chooses our good unconditionally.
Maybe it’s time to drop our act and learn the joy of being loved fully naked and without shame.