Do You Insist on Livers and Onions? A Parable of “Pretend Love”

Posted: August 17, 2009 in Abundant Life, Bride of Christ, Jesus Christ, Jesus is My Life, Love
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sHE-LOVED-LIVER-AND-ONIONSA man loved a woman. As is common, he wooed her and courted her. During their courtship, on occasion, he met with her after she supped with her father & family on liver and onions. On these occasions, though he loved her dearly, even the scent of her breath repulsed him. He spoke to her of his illness at even the odor of liver and onions, while understanding that while she abode in her father’s house there really was no remedy.

bride-and-groomEventually, he received her to himself as his wife. He had begun building their dream home and was not finished, so he moved her from her father’s house into a nice apartment. He often traveled  between their home he was building and their apartment, but he or his groomsmen were never too far to assist her in any and every need.

The first Saturday evening after the honeymoon had ended, the groom approached their apartment for supper with his bride. He had been thinking of this all day and was anxiously awaiting the opportunity to again woo his bride, now his wife. As he opened the door, he was immediately sickened by the smell of liver & onions. His bride had prepared a heaping platter, presenting it splendidly … and causing him painful nausea. “Have I not told you the smell of liver and onions makes me ill? Come, come away. Let us go elsewhere and sup and later, after I am gone, please clean this away.” With this loving plea he called his bride to his side. Yet though they went elsewhere, still the scent of the liver and onions hung about her. Still, she was contrite and apologized sincerely, and he loved her dearly.

The second Saturday … yes, it happened again. Again, his bride was contrite and apologetic.

The third Saturday ... need I say it? This time, the bride excused herself with “It is a habit. I’m trying to break it. Be patient.

The fourth Saturday … she explained, “In my father’s house, every Saturday night we make a platter of liver and onions and there is happiness and laughter. I want you to share in that pleasure.

He tried to tell her he could not. There was no pleasure for him in the meal, nor in the type of happiness of her father’s house. He told her he had taken her from that house because there was no place for him in it, as he and her father were mortal enemies. She had come to him willingly and must put aside the customs of her father, even the little ones like the liver & onions.

The fifth Saturday … yet again. This time, she did not excuse herself, explain herself or apologize. “If you loved me, you would accept that this is part of who I am.” He loved her, though she might not realize how much. By bringing her out of her father’s house, he had brought her away from the destruction soon to fall upon it.

The sixth Saturday … she was not at the quarters when he arrived. A note on the floor said: “I’ve gone to my father’s house for liver & onions. You’re welcome to come enjoy with us.”

Liver-aND-ONION-FEEDI wonder if the bride truly loves her groom.

Jesus called us to Him, from the house of our father, the Devil – a liar and murderer from the beginning. We knew Jesus was Holy and could not abide sin, yet He loved us despite the stench of sin all about us.

We know the writings of Paul to “put off the old” or to “mortify your members”, or John’s statements to “be holy even as He is holy”. Even James says “to him who knows to do good, and does it not; to him it is sin”. From Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David and the Prophets we hear continually that God desires a sanctified people … but do we continue to crave our “liver and onions”.

Contrition, apology, explanation, excuses, rationalization, defiance, rebellion. Is this the condition of a repentant heart? As we consider Jesus Christ, is our “heart-love” like Gomer or Ruth? Both were beloved by their husbands, but only one lived an abundant, satisfying life. One became the lineage of Blessing for all people (Jesus Christ), the other a source of shame for her children and husband. Christian, you are the Bride of Christ. Do you insist on eating liver and onions?

Thanks to Robert Kent Reed for this modern day parable of stubborn “pretend-love”. The original is here


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