To say that I am uncomfortable with some of the comments that have come my way lately is an understatement.
People are so kind and say such kind things but I do find myself uncomfortable with the adjectives they use to "praise" me and my family. Those of you who have adopted or done anything big for God (ie: something that seems CRAZY to the world) might understand what I am talking about. Please don't get me wrong. I appreciate the sweet comments and praises for being - kind, dedicated, self-sacrificing, patient, loving, generous, amazing, etc...
Although I and my family might have moments of each of those personality traits, we are no more those things than someone else...on our own. ANY of those things that you think you see or think we are - I just can't take credit for.
The credit is all God's. ALL - EVERY BIT - ALWAYS.
The other day I was STRUCK by a song. Has that ever happened to you?? The words are straight from one of the most popular, well-known, and dare I say - overused (not sure scripture can ever be overused but...) scripture from the Bible. 1 Corinthians 13. The love chapter.
Like you, I have read this chapter many times, heard it at countless weddings, and even had to nervously read it from the pulpit a few times. Yeah, yeah, we all know...it's about love. But in the car the other day I was really hit by the words in a whole new way. This chapter is not just about how to live a life of loving the special people (our spouses, our families) in a nice way. Our lives should show Christ's love always, and in all we do and to everyone we encounter - every day, all the time. Wow. This is not about being a super great person who is nice.
(Yikes, I have a long way to go...really...)
This is love. And this love isn't easy. It can be uncomfortable, hard, tiring, challenging, boring, irritating, long-suffering, painful - but also joyful, rewarding, and fun.
And when we really show it, we are allowing God to come through us to another. Then maybe those descriptives above will be seen more and more in our lives. (Not just what people think we are because we have chosen to follow God on a unconventional project!) Proof that He is who He is and what He is - LOVE.
(Just reread this and I feel I should put a disclaimer here at this point: I realize I am not stating any novel or profound new meaning of this chapter. Just suffice it to say that what I love about God's word is how it meets us at the moment we are hearing or reading it and speaks fresh each time when we are really listening). Hearing this song convicted me that the words my friends and family are saying about me (and my family) need to be REALLY what I am more and more and more. That if I am really heeding God's word and allowing Him to change me and my life, then those descriptives above will be more accurate more of the time. Let my life and my actions, be the proof of His love.
Here's the song...enjoy...(I found several versions/videos on youtube but this one I particularly liked!)