Five girls talk about how this world sees love and what love really is.
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Themes: Following Christ, Love, Lent
Five girls with books in their hands wait outside a classroom. Four are very active, looking at the other (Julianne), who just sits there taking deep breaths. She looks very depressed. The four shrug their shoulders as they speculate what could be wrong with her, then appoint one person (Hayley) to ask her what is wrong.
Hayley: Julie; Julianne. (Julianne is deep in thought), Julie? (She touches her on the shoulder and gives her a gentle shake.)
Julianne: What? Oh, I’m sorry. I guess I was daydreaming.
Hayley: Julie, it’s obvious that you are not yourself today. What’s wrong?
Courtney: Yeah, Julie, you’ve been down all day. I’ve heard about “blue Monday” but you’re almost purple.
Julianne: I know. I’m sorry. I haven’t been myself today. I’m sort of sad.
Alicia: Julie, what’s the matter?
Julianne: It’s something between David and me.
Alicia: David, what a hunk! What’s wrong between you two…I hope?
Alicia: I’m sorry. I didn’t mean anything. But he is a guy any girl would love to go out with.
Julianne: Well, they can if they want.
Hayley: (shocked) What?
Alicia: You two looked like the perfect couple to me.
Courtney: Julie, what went wrong?
Julianne: (taking a deep sigh) Nothing went wrong. That’s what makes it so hard to break up.
Alicia: (really confused) Honey, I don’t understand, that’s all. Nothing is wrong. You still care about each other. But you’re not together anymore?
Julianne: That’s right.
Hayley: Julie, most of us break up with a guy when he won’t spend time with us or treats us bad. We’re just having trouble figuring out why you’d end a relationship with a guy you still like.
Julianne: I don’t just like him, I think I was beginning to love him.
Alicia: Oh, now I am confused. (Loudly and filled with emotion) Are you crazy, Julie?
Julianne: I don’t think so. Let me tell you the whole story. David and I want to accomplish an awful lot of things in our lives. He’s thinking about going to medical school. He wants to go to Europe, or maybe join the service in order to earn enough money to go to school. And I want to do some great things, too. I want to go into the diplomatic corps. I’d love to be an ambassador to a foreign country. In order to reach these goals we’re gonna have to work real hard and make lots of sacrifices. We really don’t have time to make any kind of commitment to each other. In fact, we may get in each other’s way. We care for each other, really care for each other, and so we’re going to sacrifice our being together.
Courtney: I’m sorry, Julie, but you’re wrong, dead wrong. You’re sacrificing your love for the foggy notion that you might be these great important people if you work and slave like monks.
Julianne: No, Courtney, we’re not sacrificing our love. We’re putting it to work. When you really love someone you want what’s best for them. What’s best for David and me is that we don’t put ourselves in a position where we can be a burden on each other.
Alicia: Well, isn’t that just divine?
Courtney & Hayley: Don’t be catty, Alicia.
Julianne: Well, it is kind of divine. At least, that’s the way God works.
Alicia: With all due respect, Julianne, you’re not trying to be like God, are you?
Julianne: Yes, I guess I am, and I should. We all should.
Courtney: Julie, we’re not all perfect, you know.
Julianne: I know, but that’s what makes love, real love, so divine.
Alicia: If this is a sermon, tell me so I can sit down.
Julianne: Alicia, sit down!
Hayley: Oh, oh!
Julianne: Alicia, all people, men and women, boys and girls, are God’s people. They are all loved by Him and so they are all precious, and that makes them worthy of our concern.
Alicia: Don’t include Joey Pecarrere in that group. He just dumped me.
Julianne: I’m sorry to hear that, Alicia. I know you like him a lot. But regardless of what he’s done and how he’s hurt you, he’s still loved and forgiven by God. We all are. The Bible says that “while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” That’s what real love is. It’s giving another person what is needed, even if that person doesn’t deserve it. And that’s what God did for us in Jesus. He gave us eternal life by sending Jesus to die on the cross. He gave of Himself so that we would have the opportunity of becoming everything that God hoped for us to be. And when you’re loved by God, Alicia, you can’t help but do whatever is best for that other person.
Courtney: Julie, that’s really beautiful. I can’t tell you how impressed I am. But how do you give up so easily what could at least for a little while be so wonderful?
Julianne: Oh, I don’t give it up easily. As you can see, I’m not singing for joy today. I’m just praying I can do it.
Hayley: Where will you get your strength?
Julianne: I have the cross I got for confirmation. It may sound weird, but every day I look at my cross and I remember what love really is. My confirmation Bible verse was “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” Jesus laid down His life for me. That’s really love, and so now I just pray that He helps me really love David and the rest of my world by laying down my life, even my hopes and dreams, for them.
Alicia: Julianne, I don’t say this often, but I’m impressed. This all makes wonderful sense, it’s just so different from the way the world thinks. I can’t help but think how things would be so different if everyone knew that love wasn’t something you get, but something you give.
Hayley: Julie, I’ve got to tell you, I’m floored. If you and David can do this–well, you just might make me rethink every relationship in my life.
Julianne: It sort of gives new meaning to being “in love,” doesn’t it?
Hayley: Yes, it does, because God’s in love with me!
Originally published in Youth Ministry Quarterly 90:4, Winter 1990.
Republished and revised in April 2011 for thESource.