The Unopened Love Letters

[276 words]

“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways,” is perhaps one of the best-known lines of poetry ever written. But do you know the story of the creator of those words?

Elizabeth Barrett was a poet who lived many years with her parents. Her father was bizarre. He had forbidden all 12 of his sons and daughters to wed.

Elizabeth met another poet by the name of Robert Browning. They corresponded and met in secret. When Robert approached Edward about marrying Elizabeth, he was denied and ordered out of the house—never to return. Robert’s love was strong, so the couple eloped. Edward Barrett disowned his daughter.

Elizabeth loved her parents and did everything she could to be reconciled with them. She wrote beautiful, expressive, endearing letters to them. She did this for ten years without response. Finally, a package came from the Barretts. It was a happy moment for Elizabeth as she opened it. Had her Dad finally forgiven her? — No!

Instead, in the box, she found all of her letters returned and unopened. Elizabeth was broken-hearted!

Elizabeth Barrett Browning was a world-famous poet and her letters of reconciliation have been called “masterpieces of literature.” But her parents never read them!

Likewise, Jesus has sent to mankind beautiful letters of reconciliation. He even died so that sinful people could have hope of everlasting life. It must break His heart that so many refuse to even read these letters of love!

Do you read your Bible? Or do you leave God’s love letters, unopened?

“Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart” (Psalms 119:2).

Larry Fitzgerald
Woodlawn church of Christ
Abilene, TX

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