Created for Pursuit

Couple walking together, husband and wife holding hands,

My earliest memory of Valentine's Day takes me back to my 8th year of school, a time when I first became aware of romantic emotions. Of course, up until this point I didn’t actually have the courage to walk up to her and start a conversation, but Valentine’s Day seemed to give me the perfect excuse to express my love. Can you remember your first crush?


There’s something that God hardwired into a man - the instinct to pursue. I remember how hearing about the way a young man pursues a young woman, although it scared me, also resonated so deeply with my heart. Men become alive in the pursuit - of someone, something, and ultimately our relationship with Abba Father.


However, this pursuit is often the very place the enemy begins to attack, chipping away at our identity. The boy who attempts to talk to the girl but gets humiliated starts to believe the lie that he’s not good enough. The husband who attempts a romantic night, but fails to pay attention to the true needs of his wife, believes that he’s just not very romantic. The young dad with career aspirations to better provide for his family puts himself forward for the promotion, but gets rejected and starts believing that he won’t progress beyond his current level.


The enemy will use any approach to try and infect our hearts with a lie that causes us to stop the pursuit. Think about it, you only pursue that which you believe you can reach. Believing the lie, means we settle for less than God’s design for our lives.


Have you halted your pursuit?


God admonishes the church of Ephesus and then gives them a truth that penetrates the heart:


“...But I have this against you: you have abandoned the passionate love you had for me at the beginning. Think about how far you have fallen! Repent and do the works of love you did at first…” (Rev 2:4-5, TPT).


As I read this, I’m convicted of my own need to repent for playing it safe with my heart. For pulling back when I felt scared that my vulnerability will not be received in a loving and accepting way. For not having that risky conversation with my wife, because I know last time I tried we simply couldn’t land on the same page and I don’t know how we’ll get there.


So I’m repenting that I’ve stopped my pursuit in those areas where I felt hurt or scared. I’m committing to live with my wife in a bold and courageous way. I’m committing to pursue oneness with her every day, despite the hurt, misunderstandings, or unmet expectations.


So as I think back on the first Valentines Day when I needed an excuse to have courage, I’m taking a vow this Valentines Day to stop having excuses and to live courageously in the way God designed me to live. I choose to keep pursuing my wife and not allow any past hurts or disappointments to cause me to whimper away from those areas of discussion.


Will you join me? Let’s live courageously. Let’s pick up the passionate love we had at the beginning and pursue our beloved wife, pursue Christ, and pursue the vision(s) God has planted in our hearts!


Grace & Peace,

Wynand Jacobs

FamilyLife NZ Executive Director


Wynand Jacobs is the NZ Director for FamilyLife. He hosts the FamilyLife NZ podcast and speaks regularly at marriage conferences. For the past 30 years, FamilyLife NZ has been equipping couples to build strong families and stay married for a lifetime through their Weekend to Remember getaways and resources.


For tips and resources to practically help you on your pursuit, why not check out:

Free Date Night Ideas

The FamilyLife NZ Podcast

A Weekend to Remember