Love Like You’ve Never Been Hurt by Jentezen Franklin (A book review)
NYT best-selling author, his latest: Love Like You’ve Never Been Hurt, Baker/Chosen 2018;
Senior pastor of megachurch Free Chapel Church, 10,000 plus members;
Host of weekly program Kingdom Connection which broadcasts worldwide on TBN, Daystar and local stations;
Founder, Kingdom Connection Media Ministry, includes international television and publishing ministries.
‘You may remember the hurt sometimes in the future, but you will see it differently” Only when you forgive by seeing the person through the eye of Christ.
LOVING THROUGH THE HURT
When Jentezen’s oldest daughter started college, tensions mounted as she wanted to see what life was like on the other side of church life. She got involved with the wrong crowd and as the situation got worse, Jentezen says each day brought yet another fight. One day the situation was so bad that he and his wife Cherise drove to college without their daughter’s knowledge to pull her out of school. Once she settled back at home, Jentezen says things just got worse. One day their daughter left a note saying she couldn’t stand the rules and that she was leaving. For a week, Jentezen and Cherise had no idea where their daughter was. Over the next few months they had limited contact with her and a few months later she texted them she had fallen in love and got married via a Justice of the Peace. That following weekend, Jentezen was officiating the wedding of one of her friends. “My heart broke. I was devastated,” says Jentezen. At that time, he heard in his head for the first time, Love like you’ve never been hurt. He realized that this was a choice he needed to make. The hurdles of rebuilding their family has been difficult. “We still have challenges that we have to get through” he says. “But we have determined to love like we’ve never been hurt. It is a choice we have to make over and over and over again.” Today his oldest daughter is the media director at a church in Atlanta. Her husband is a graphic artist there, too. Their second daughter and her husband have a son. Their third daughter is involved in ministry. Their youngest daughter is in her second year in college and their son is at Liberty University. “This has been the fruit of refusing to allow hurt to dictate how we love our children.”
Jentezen says life is an adventure in forgiveness. “It’s all about reaching and releasing,” he says. He recalls his first sermon where the biggest point was: you don’t need just a good memory; you need a good “forgettery.” He believes we need to stop keeping score and start losing count when it comes to forgiveness, a concept he has reiterated many times in his home. Over the years, Jentezen taught his daughters they couldn’t get tattoos until they were 18. After he finished writing this book, two of his daughters called on video chat showing off their new tattoos: 70 x 7 (referring to the story in the Bible where Peter asks Jesus how often he should forgive someone and the Lord replied, Seventy times seven). The girls said the reason they got those tattoos was because their father taught so much about living like they’d never been hurt. He reminds us that forgiveness is a decision. “70 times 7. Commit to this lifestyle. It will change your life.” When we choose to see people through the eyes of Jesus, that is the beginning of loving how God loves. “You will find a love so wide, so high, so deep, so long, you will never be the same,” says Jentezen.
LOVING WHEN IT’S IMPOSSIBLY HARD
As parents we are responsible for leading our families. Jentezen say there are four steps we can take to love, even when it feels impossibly hard:
- Never stop praying for our children.
- Stay committed. Til death do us part.
- Be aware of your greatest temptation. We are most vulnerable to temptation when we can justify it the best.
- Say I’m sorry and mean it. We all make mistakes. Humble yourself, repent and ask for forgiveness.
Also see a message on forgiveness written in this site: http://thecompletedwork.com/?p=231