Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.
1 Timothy 6:9
Oliver offered Jenny everything the world admires and longs for. He was handsome and intelligent. He came from a long line of wealth, fortune and fame. He owned a convertible and took her on romantic rides across the countryside while the wind caressed her lovely face. He could fly her to Paris and buy her fancy things.
He could not, however, truly comfort her in her final moments of life, because like her, he had chosen to believe that God didn’t exist. He did not believe that Jenny would be ushered from this life into the next where God waited for her. He could not hold her dying body and assure her that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.
As a young woman, I would have wept over the pain of seeing their “perfect love story” end in death, two people torn apart. As a grown-up girl, the tears that would be shed over a story like this is that it ended in the most severe tragedy of all: a precious twenty-five year old woman slipping into eternity, facing eternal separation from God, because she had decided against Him – her exact words.
It was fascinating to learn that the lyrics were written after the movie became such a success. Paramount Pictures commissioned Carl Sigman, one of America’s most gifted songwriters, to pen the lyrics. I came across an interview given by his son, Michael, a few years after his famous father’s death. He said that when his father wrote a lyric, he would go over it and over it, play it for their family and friends, and get everyone’s input. In those days, the music publishers were the powerhouses, and they had to believe in a song for it to be recorded.
There was a system of checks and balances. With the theme of Love Story, Sigman wrote a lyric about a woman who died, because that’s what the movie was about. The people at Paramount wanted the focus to be on a love song, not a woman who died, so he had to rewrite it. Out of frustration, he said to his wife, “Where do I begin?” That phrase became the opening lyric for the new song. The song about love and life – not death.
When I was a young woman, I was dying. Not from a terminal illness that would cause my physical body to cease, but from heart issues. My heart had become a heart of stone. The enemy of my soul had shot it so full of arrows that I made the decision to never let it feel again. He had written a lyric for my life – one of death, destruction and despair.
There really aren’t words to express how grateful I am that I learned that God in heaven wanted the lyric of my life to be a love song. He had a much different story for me to live, a love story full of life and hope. I smile at the thought of God looking down from the heavens at me and thinking to himself in frustration, Where do I begin with her? But it is a wrong thought, a small thought about God.
God knows where to begin with a life that is full of destruction and despair. He is perfectly able and willing to rewrite a life story that seems beyond hope. He sent His son Jesus as a ransom for me, for a life like mine. Every sin, every hurt and pain – all of it could be redeemed, if I would but simply ask and then be willing to receive. To believe!