Continued from here.
While God continued transforming me a little at a time through forgiving my abusers, He drew me to the movie Fireproof, written by Alex Kendrick and Stephen Kendrick. For those of you who have not seen the movie, it stars Kirk Cameron as a fireman named Caleb whose marriage is falling apart. His wife tells him that she wants a divorce at the beginning of the movie. Caleb’s father asks him to delay the divorce for 40 days and sends him a “love dare” by mail.
The “love dare” is a 40-day exploration of unconditional love as defined by I Cor. 13. The “love dare” walked Caleb through how to express unconditional love to his spouse in tangible ways, such as by refraining from saying anything negative to her, doing thoughtful things for her, and removing anything harmful to the marriage (such as Caleb’s interest in pornography over the computer).
While Caleb is resistant to the “love dare” at first, he pushes through and finds himself transformed by the end of the 40 days. The transformation of Caleb, in turn, transforms his marriage, which transforms his wife. By the end of the movie, the couple is in love again with God at the center of their marriage.
I didn’t know why I was so drawn to this movie. I thought it was more about trying to understand unconditional love, which was something I had never experienced until my one-on-one time with God, but certainly not with another person. I had no interest in “doing the love dare” to my husband. After all, I could only see the speck of sawdust in his eye, not the forest of planks in my own eye. I was certain that I was not to blame for anything wrong in my marriage.
Because this obsession with the movie would not stop, I decided to buy Alex Kendrick and Stephen Kendrick’s book, The Love Dare, and see what I could learn about unconditional love. I had no interest, much less a plan, to “do the love dare” to my husband.
[Graphic: Cover of the movie Fireproof. Courtesy Amazon.com.]