Friday, January 29, 2010


Sometimes things look nothing like they should.

Today we were at the doctor for Aila's well visit, and they had dot-to-dot worksheets there so I grabbed one to do with Trevor. He needed a lot of help, and he pretty much held the pen and drew lines from number to number. I told him where to go next, and he drew the lines.
Unfortunately, he took a lot of liberties while drawing the lines from number to number, and this was the result:
"What is it?" Trevor asked me excitedly when we finished. The problem was that I didn't know what to tell him. I wasn't able to recognize it for what it was.

Determined to solve the mystery, I grabbed another dot-to-dot sheet on the way out of the doctor's office and when I got home, I did it myself (sans the help of a 4-year old boy). Here was the result:
As I stared at the paper, it hit me. Sometimes we take so many liberties with the commandments we've been given to love, that the end result doesn't look anything like love.
Love is:
calling to say you'll be late
showing her mercy
rooting for them
using gentle hands
speaking truth
saying, "I'm sorry"
picking up the pieces when their worlds shatter
praying over him
forgiving wrongs
taking the opportunity to say what needs to be heard
building up with words
spending time
motivated by another's good
serving him the bigger piece
speaking well to/about them
Love is not:
making him feel like his efforts aren't sufficient
berating them for spilling the juice
drudging up the past
sarcastic words
avoiding that difficult-to-love person
Believe me, I'm anything but an authority on this. This past week LOVE has been on my heart, and surprisingly enough, it has nothing to do with all the Valentine's Day stuff everywhere I go. I think it started when I saw someone who has in the past sapped me and taken, taken, taken without a thing to give. And when I saw her I thought, "I don't have it in me today" and headed in the opposite direction. I am extremely UNPROUD of that. Because yes, boundaries are appropriate, but LOVE is far more so. And as I spent the rest of the day (and this week) considering what love is, I've come to conclusion that love just doesn't do stuff like that.

I can take all kinds of liberties when it comes to the call to love. I can justify all kinds of UN-love. But I don't want my Heavenly Father looking down on my life, thinking to Himself, "That's supposed to be love? I don't see it." Oh, that my marriage would look like love. Especially to Justin. And that the way I treat my children would be recognizable as love. Especially to Trevor and Aila. And that what I have for others would be love--not something so far from it that it's unrecognizable.

I want to love well, but perhaps I have a long way to go.
Lord, thank You for Your example of love--greater love hath no man than the One who gave His life for His friends.

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